Joe Booley’s new ‘Movements’ EP is an almost-concept body of work that seamlessly fits together five songs full of raw emotion. It was written by Joe as a way of overcoming his own anxieties and heartbreak and finds him opening up his heart to try and help others who are having similar experiences.
The EP opens with the ‘Movements 1&2’. These tracks begin with some emo-tinged Into It. Over It.-style guitar work and echoing drums as Joe perhaps regretfully looks back over past decisions: ‘And I don’t know what I should do. I’m sat here waiting around for you’. There’s a seamless segue between the two songs as the second part is very choral and subtle to start with, but this soon makes way for some passionate angst as Joe sings about how ‘I don’t have the sense to write all these words. I sure do have the voice to make them hurt’ over a thrilling clash of big-sounding drums.
The first song aired from this EP, ‘Movements 3’ gave an insight into the sound Joe was aiming for and its sparse, melancholic beginning and emotive vocals can’t fail to give you goosebumps and feel Joe’s pain: ‘I know that you’ll change your mind ’cause your heart has made its choice’; ‘You’ll leave some day’. ‘Movements 4’ has the kind of atmospheric tone that Julien Baker excels in and the lyrics are again perfectly poignant: ‘And the days go by and the nights they pass, the weeks they come and go. I’ll be right here in the middle my dear, waiting for you to show me how to live my life again.
Finishing the EP is ‘Movements 5’, a song that will be familiar to anyone who has seen Joe live over the past year or so. It’s an important piece about how you can help friends and loved ones simply by being there and listening. It tackles the important subject of mental health and has Joe in reassuring mood as he delicately sings ‘I will try to fix your life. And I will try to make things right’ over and over again amidst intricate guitar hooks.
One of the Hants and Surrey area’s leading lights when it comes to music, Joe Booley continues to take steps forward with every release and ‘Movements’ is a stirring collection of understatedly powerful songs and themes.
Buy ‘Movements’ on limited-edition vinyl here: http://bethshalomrecords.limitedrun.com/products/609650-joe-booley-movements