James Vincent McMorrow : Grapefruit Season Review
James Vincent McMorrow is releasing his long-awaited fifth studio album called Grapefruit Season. The album was produced by James alongside fellow genre disruptors Paul Epworth, Kenny Beats, Lil Silva, and Patrick Wimberly (Chairlift) and was recorded in London, Los Angeles, and Dublin. The song’s theme embraces the fact that life is chaos and the idea of growing up but feeling none the wiser. Grapefruit Season sees James Vincent McMorrow push himself (and his sound) in all-new ways through elements of dancehall to soul, country to R&B. The title, Grapefruit Season, seems to indicate doing simply what you want, rather than what you are supposed to do (it was inspired by James watching his mum eat grapefruit as a kid and the idea that what’s good for you may not actually be pleasurable).
“Paradise” is the album’s first song, and it leads off with a fun, exciting track with McMorrow’s excellent falsetto and rhythmic singing style. McMorrow rests into the beat as the synths and guitar provide a moving backdrop. The chorus has male/female vocal harmonies and a bouncy beat. McMorrow’s music is energetic, easy to listen to, and stimulates the body to move.
“Gone” is a dancehall song alive with McMorrow’s sweet falsetto vocals and vocalizations. McMorrow brings his ability of polymath rhythmic phrasing combined with his ability to channel omnivorous tastes into a cohesive whole. Throughout McMorrow’s career, he has followed inspiration wherever it leads, and that remains a refreshing constant on this album and with a selection like “Gone.”.
Grapefruit Season is an album of many musical treasures. McMorrow’s constant push to find new sounds combined with his assertive tone, falsetto, and rhythmic abilities shine on each selection. McMorrow describes the album best, “I don’t know if any of this makes any sense – but Grapefruit Season is about embracing the idea nothing makes sense. None of it is supposed to be linear. Music isn’t some holy grail to a greater meaning; it’s supposed to remove you from where you are for a moment and take you somewhere else. And I’m not saying that isn’t a transcendent thing because when it’s done well, it truly is. And I believe/hope I have done it well with this album. I’m just saying that at the end of the day, music is a simple idea unadorned idea that doesn’t need bells and whistles to make it work…. unless you’re making an album where the only instruments are bells and whistles, then you definitely need them to make it work.”
Connect with James Vincent McMorrow: Website |
James Vincent McMorrow
September 17, 2021
Sony Music Entertainment UK Limited