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Miss Maggie May, American Music Writer.

Review of Hemy & Marshall’s “Rise and Fall” EP 

            Coming across any new, up-and-coming band is always difficult for me. Maybe it’s the fact that some of my favorite bands that I simply could not live without today, were bands that I couldn’t stand for some reason on first listen. Usually, they’ll grow on me until I fall in love. Now, I don’t remember the last time I listened to a band from Australia other than John Butler Trio. I usually stick selfishly to the confines of my own country, maybe once in a while checking out a few bands from England in between. I don’t think it has anything to do with my preference, but rather the feeling that it is sometimes easier to stick to what you know instead of venturing into the uncertain. After taking a listen to Hemy and Marshall, I realized that sticking to what you know isn’t always the best option.

I was pleasantly surprised after stumbling upon this trio from Melbourne. Hemy and Marshall is an alternative/indie pop band who are soon releasing their newest EP, appropriately titled “Rise and Fall”. When I say the title is appropriately named, I don’t by any means consider it to be a metaphor for my interest in them. Frankly, I feel quite the opposite. After listening to the three tracks, “Rise and Fall,” “Sanctity,” and “World I Live” in subsequent order, I felt as if it was the perfect musical transition from beginning to end. It was just like listening to one long track that picked me up, made me feel at ease, and then sat me back down slowly.

            “Rise and Fall” is the first track on the EP. The acoustics at the beginning of the song set the stage for a mellow, satisfying vocally-driven track. Hemy’s voice is captivating and beautiful to say the least. It definitely seems as if there is a point he is trying to get across on this track and whatever it is, it had me listening. I hate to compare him to another artist, but I was immediately reminded of Noel Gallagher in this one. His tone seems to be so melancholic at times, but transitions into a tone of gratification so fast you’ll be trapped in a euphoric-state throughout the whole song.

            “Sanctify” was by far my favorite out of the three. The slow piano introduction paved a perfect path for the aggressive acoustic and electric guitar riffs that followed. This one definitely had a lot of energy to it, which was a great pick-me-up after being mesmerized by the previous song’s trance-like vibe. The ins and outs of the saxophone went hand in hand with Hemy’s confident, piercing, in-your-face vocals. For a band that has only been together for about a year, it becomes evident (in this song especially) that they are extremely synchronized and I would love to hear this one performed live.

            I just changed my mind. After listening to “World I Live,” it immediately replaced “Sanctify” as my favorite. It definitely has more of a pop-like feeling to it. The acoustic guitar riff is repetitive in the beginning and it works so well, leaving plenty of room for the electric to give it a high-pitched accent. Then came the saxophone, at which point I almost lost it. The tune was so bouncy and buoyant that I couldn’t help but dance a little. This is the type of song that you would hear on the radio and call in just to get the name. It is just too catchy. There was something about the simplicity of this song that really gave me a mixture of emotions all at once, almost contradicting itself in the process.

            I’m really glad I got a chance to listen to this gem of a trio. What they lack in total song selection so far, they make up for in unrefined talent. I’m sure I’ll be able to make due with what they have to offer, however. Each member of the band seems to incorporate their skills into the songs in a unique way, making for a pleasant concoction of melodies that will grow on you with each individual listen. I’m looking forward to hearing more from this band and I’m sure they will deliver, just like they did with this EP.


Stream the whole Rise and Fall EP continuously here on Soundcloud:


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