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  • Writer's pictureCHRIS FARLIE

EP REVIEW: EMILY LOCKETT - TO BE CONTINUED


EMILY LOCKETT - TO BE CONTINUED

Emily Lockett has always been a purveyor of perfect pop country, dive into any of her releases and you'll be richly rewarded, with well produced, primarily though not exclusively, guitar driven, hook laden material fronted by someone who knows her way around a great tune.


Hot off the back of a storming Buckle & Boots performance she comes with her new EP "to be continued". The EP consists of 4 new songs that will not otherwise be available until later in the year and is limited to 100 physical CD's, a number of which will surely have been snapped up at B&B.






EMILY LOCKETT - TO BE CONTINUED

The EP opens to "Blow Your Mind", which takes a very niche reference that only true music lovers will appreciate and then applies it to a real life situation, of how some things you only get to appreciate over time. Emily applies this logic to a potential relationship


"I may as well be a part of the fixtures - because you never ever notice me

You've got your own little circle and I'm out on the periphery"



The verse is played out over a slightly annoying thumping electronic beat which fortunately subsides after the first chorus.


"Because I'm the song that you skip all the time

And now that you heard it play - it blew your mind"


The second verse sees Emily turn into a bit of a stalker, the sound is beefed up by some more authentic sounding percussion. It also sees Emily deploy a classic songwriting device whereby the end of the verse seamlessly links into the chorus as if in one continuous flow.


"I got all dressed up and went to your favourite bar

I thought if I was there, I'd have a better chance of letting you know that ....."


The chorus this time round though is extended and explains that feeling of really clicking with something that previously you had overlooked


"When that beat drives you wild and you can't get it out of your brain

It's the only thing going round your head for days"


There is lots of inventive guitar work throughout and Emily musically finds a different way each time to take on the chorus. Ultimately though despite the optimism of eventually being discovered, the song closes without resolution. There's always tomorrow. It only enhances that "Perfect Pop" reputation we were talking of earlier.


"Rush Hour Crush" is not about the perils of travelling on the Piccadilly Line in the morning, although it does deal with commuting, Emily is delightfully playing with the word "crush" to suit her purposes. Opening to a strumming electric guitar and faint station announcements playing in the background, only someone who has gone through the mundane routine of the daily drudge to work, will truly appreciate how Emily has put into words the way that your mind can wander on seeing the same faces each day.


If #TEAMw21 had minor reservations about some of the production elements on the previous track they are more than blown away by the effort gone to on this tune with swirling strings giving a majestic grandeur to events happening in a small carriage.


The opening verse quickly swings from bemoaning the state of the transport infrastructure to observing a new arrival on the scene, the final line is like being inside Emily's brain as she assesses the situation.


"I'm on this train every day, but I don't tend to see many new faces

It's in a sorry state I'll say - and I've never been on time - it always takes ages

There's this girl, sitting three seats down from me - right now

Yeah she's pretty. looks like she's funny - I want to ask her out!"


The verse ends on three powerful drum beats that lead into a powerhouse of a chorus, an explosion of percussion and guitars.


"She's my Rush Hour Crush and she gets me through the day

Until it's five o five, and the city comes to life"


The second verse sees Emily attributing a back story to this total stranger purely from the clothes she is wearing.


"She probably shares a tiny flat - somewhere in Maida Vale"


The latter stages of the song sees an absolute wall of sound appear that is just packed with drama, a virtual Philharmonics worth!


An EP otherwise full of relationships not realised contains a song very much at the other end of the romantic spectrum. There is something deeply personal about "Your New Blonde", the feelings described are very visceral, at some point they are probably universally suffered, yet knowing other people have met the same fate does not make it hurt any less when it happens to you.


The opening is a combo of piano and guitar


"I hope she hurts you like you've hurt me

And you're up every night, yeah wonderin' what the hell you did

And I hope you want her to have a spare room key

So when its pushed through your door, you know just what it means"


Somehow although the next lines reflect a reasonably recent phenomenon they seem even more cruel


"And I hope you trust her - with all your darkest secrets

And then when it falls apart - It's all on social media!"


It all leads to the perfectly understandable chorus


"Now that you're happy with your new blonde -

I can't help but wish that something horrible would go wrong"


and to the justifiable conclusion


"I want you to see, what if felt like to be me"


This outpouring of feelings is wrapped up in the most cracking of pop tunes which could lead to Emily having to relive this at every gig, conceivably with fans singing the words back to her. The latter verses pick out scenes in such specific intimate detail, too vivid to be made up surely without having a kernel of truth, that you truly share Emily's pain .


The stand out track of high quality EP


The final track "Back Of The Church" is the only one listed as being a demo, as even though it is all but complete Emily is leaving herself room to perhaps tweak it a little further. It examines that feeling that possibly someone in the room has at every wedding "It should have been me!".


Initially opening to an acoustic guitar and effects, Emily outlines her position, in a melody that beautifully trips off the tongue.


"I was going to be late so you didn't notice me walk in

I'd sit in the back on the left inside and,just blend in

It's a perfect day and I wouldn't change a thing if it had been mine

The hardest part is you not knowing why"


The chorus sees Emily reveal all the little details that she's kept bottled up, explaining why she is sat where she is. The lyrics are a little conflicted because even Emily acknowledges that this match up is the right thing just that it might have been different had she had a "Sliding Doors" moment


I didn't knock on you door the night he left

Wouldn't walk you home, every time you'd forget

We're just friends - never meant to cross that line

I told you to say yes to that first date

When all you wanted was me, I could see it in you face

It's clear he's your better half -

and I'm just the girl sat alone at the back of the church"


The second verse sees Emily recalling more misses chances from her past


Almost as you think the song might be about to fade there is a final verse, wonderfully observed and delivered so vividly that we could almost be sat in the back row with Emily


"Who'd ever noticed the stained glass windows and old church pews

But now I'm finding anything to keep from watching you

I want to shout, no I want to scream

All I keep thinking was - it should have been me

The hardest part is you not knowing why"

"

The song bizarrely closes on the line "I'll never tell you why" when in effect this song does just that.


"to be continued" is an EP where Emily Lockett undoubtedly wears her heart on her sleeve, with some truly personal lyrics while unleashing her most expansive musical palette to date.


If you were unable to get a copy at Buckle & Boots - the EP is available from address below - once they're gone they're gone!!

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