The new EP from London-based FERGUS is illustrious and at times a rather exemplary offering, full of ecstasy and tranquillity. The calibre of songwriting is at times awe-inspiring and wonderfully utilises vocal harmony to significant effect. This massively makes these tracks so much more enjoyable to listen to, even on the twentieth repeat.
With just vocals, a tenderly plucked guitar and at times some visionary use of electronics, FERGUS has created an EP that deserves high amounts of praise. I have no doubt that it will be received.
The pivotal and incredible part of these exquisite and haunting songs are without a doubt the lyrics and the way these tracks are sculpted.
Like a fragile and delicate flower, the lyrics add a scope and depth and ask for a certain amount of quiet contemplation.
‘Sinking‘ starts off ‘Purple Road’ wonderfully and leaves the listener feeling intoxicated. Just like falling under someone’s spell and not having the strength to let go. Of that feeling of butterflies you inevitably get in the pit of your stomach. It is a genuinely mesmerising start to the EP.
‘Nobody Knows’ follows up next. On this song, FERGUS had this to say;
“I wrote ‘Nobody Knows’ after my friend NUUXS released her song ‘No Good For Me’ – an anthem about cutting toxic people out of your life. It made me think about some of those people in my own life. People who, on the surface, are your friend but who actually use you as a floatation device and a punching bag – pushing you down to keep themselves up, and jabbing at you to stay sharp. I’m someone who internalises stuff and obsesses over it, who can never switch myself off – I wear my heart on my sleeve, and my sleeve soaks up everything. ‘Nobody Knows’ is really a release for me of years of feeling written off and made fun of for “not doing anything” when I knew I was giving so much – parts of me these people would never give. And, because of that, feeling totally alone and like no one gets me or could ever get me… then feeling ashamed of that self-pity”.
With a pained and sorrow filled tone, the way it is sung is a heavenly match for the content that makes up these lyrics. This is an EP that rapidly passes by and perhaps seems too short. That is in no way a bad thing though, because ‘Purple Road’ is never bland, and never drags on. As pained as these songs can be, there is also a hint of hope littered throughout, and masterfully utilises and takes life experiences and turns them into beautiful stories.
The songs are reminiscent of fairy tales. Of poetry. Of something you once heard long ago, but can’t quite locate where or when. Certain tracks are mesmerising. ‘You or Nothing‘ stands out in particular. This is a delicate and beautifully written track, full of possible hope and optimism. Full of character and honesty. It is the music equivalent of a tender hug from someone who will always be irreplaceable to you. All while being gently blanketed in luscious harmony and soft guitar strings, masterfully played.
FERGUS has a brilliant talent when it comes to playing the guitar, and at times his music reminded me of some stuff from the band MONO. He seemingly knows the guitar neck back and forth and plays with emotion and passion that makes the tracks spellbinding.
Music like this is unique and doesn’t come across very often. It is reminiscent of Damien Rice, David Gray, and Iron and Wine. All artists that are able to produce songs with such absolute honesty and bittersweet depth.
Hopefully, FERGUS will be as well known. He certainly deserves to be. He can masterfully deliver songs that take the listener on a journey of complex emotions. Of turmoil, melancholy, and vulnerability. He is masterfully able to sculpt songs that claw into your subconscious mind and don’t let go. That can transport you to a place when you close your eyes. Songs that are somehow able to give you strength and peace of mind.
But, that is the power of music after all.
With brilliant production, ‘Purple Road’ is a genuinely breath-taking EP, and I certainly look forward to seeing these tracks performed live.
I implore you to take a journey down the Purple Road. It’s definitely a journey you won’t regret.