After the "why didn't that sell" 'Open Heart Zoo' and the "it makes sense why this didn't sell" 'Unholy', Martin Grech returns with a new album, "March of the Lonely". An artist who plays to his influences, Grech's first album sounded like the missing work of Radiohead, and the second sounding like Trent Reznor in a particularly bleak mood. This new album keeps elements of the past, but it's a far more understated affair and bringing to the forefront newer folk influences. It's a strange mixture, but it works wonderously, his Thom Yorke meets Jeff Buckley vocals soaring over delicately played accoustic guitars.
Though it's not as epic nor disturbing as past work, there's a definite element of menace under the music - much of it would not feel out of place underscoring a horror movie set piece in a forest. There are two songs on the album which break from this: the Johnny Cash-esque 'The Heritage' and 'The Giving Hands', the latter being one of the few genuinely jolly sounding songs he's ever release. This doesn't really fit with the vibe of the album, the concept behind it described as "the last survivor of a battle surveying his surroundings." Maybe whilst doing this the character befriends a puppy during this song. The gloomy atmosphere returns a track later, so one can only assume that the puppy died soon after.
If you're a fan of accoustic, chillout, ambient or slightly creepy music, then this is definately worth checking out. Sadly, it's not in the shops, but iTunes have been good enough to stock it.