Welcome to ‘Oh My God’ by Kevin Morby. This apparently is his 5th album. Described by some as a secular Gospel Rock album. I’d never heard of Mr Morby until I googled best albums of the year 2019 (so far) and he kept popping up on everyone’s lists. I was going to Barcelona for a week with work and I like to take new albums on trips like that. If the albums work for you then they always remind you of the place and time which I love. I always take new tracks / albums on holidays for this reason too.
My route into this album was relatively easy. I always like Dylan’s gospel phase … and I’ve grown to … at least respect Leonard Cohen, through the good work of my wife Stacey. The influences on this album are obvious but for me never over powering and Kevin (hee hee) always makes it sound like his own (there’s even a little Father John Misty and Lou Reed in there too).
This album has some of the best writing I’ve heard in a while. Each track is a memorable tune. Some more than others naturally but I love this album from start to finish and could find a place in many different types of mix tapes for all the tracks. Lyrically I find this album strong as an ox. I think the sequence of tracks is close to perfect … and the instrumentation is right up my street. Bongo’s and Congos? Tick. Church Organ? Tick tick tick. Listen to Hail Mary – best organ use since Rolling Stone by Dylan? Layers of brass? Oh yes. Harps? Yes. It’s mostly guitar and piano driven but the above instruments make this sound rich and demanding of a closer listen.
I have no idea how you guys will receive this … but Oh My God. I love it.
7 thoughts on “JULY: Kevin Morby – Oh My God”
Thanks for chosing this album brother Joey. It’s not what I’d expect you to pick but makes allot of sence knowing some if the artists you’ve been into back in the day.
I really like this album musically. As Joey has pointed out, it’s well put together and has allotg going at the right times.
The track that I keep on coming back to is Seven Devils. It works well for me musically and vocally. I really like Hail Mary as well. Piss River is a great song with an even better name.
Lyrically it’s taken me a while to get my head around. He tends to drop in and out of simple to complicated. I’m not sure if the constant transition takes away from the message?
I get allot of 60’s influences. I get the comparisons to Dylan and Cohen. I would also throw Buckley into the mix.
This album is a grower on me, the more I listen the more I like it. I still need some time with it. I’m not sure if I’m listing to it in the right season to be honest. This is a winter album for me, or perhaps autumn.
I had no idea what to expect with this, deciding to listen on Spotify (ugh, yuk) before I read this. I like doing that, unbiased by the opinion of the chooser, and it’s been a really good and interesting first impression. With my laptop bust (again) all I’ve had as impressions before this is that album cover, which is a hell of picture.
On first listen, I get all those influences: Cohen, definitely some FJM. And it’s made quite a first impression, which not everything does. There’s a real gospel feel, but not universally. So I’m looking forward to delving into this more.
Gather round gather round. Please come back to the blog brothers.
So, here is a little update in my Kevin Morby experience – I think this is my favourite album of 2019 thus far. I think there is a big difference between ‘best’ and ‘favourite’ as I have banged on about before. I very infrequently listen to the ‘best’ album of the year the most … that always happens with my ‘favourite’. For me, there is almost no mood that stops me from reaching for this album. I listen to it first thing in the AM, on the train, in the gym (!!!) and in the evening to chill out. It’s funny, Nolan said that he thinks that this has come in the wrong season … I get it and this is something Nolan’s called out before. However, I find this light and uplifting and ‘sunny’ when I want it to be but also heavier and more nourishing when I need it to be. It’s just started it’s 3rd time round on repeat this AM and I’m not close to bored yet. I am not telling you to love it or that you’re wrong if you don’t, just that it is working so MASSIVELY for me. I am in love with it and need to start walking through Kevin’s back catalogue. Enjoy.
THIS IS VERY VERY GOOD INDEED.
Keep thinking about Spiritualized when I’m listening. No bad thing at all.
More when I’ve listened some more.
Glad it’s making an impression. I’d not thought of Spiritualized but I get that now you’ve said it. As I said, I keep coming back to it. Its my go to album of 2019.
OK. This is pretty great. It’s an absolute behemoth of an album that covers so much musical ground, and it’s done with such joy and commitment. Not surprised you chose it Joey, it’s a belter.
Some of it is more traditional alt-folk/indie-folk styles – there’s plenty here that recalls the likes of Father John Misty (natch) and Iron & Wine. Also, the Destroyer lead singer reminds me of his vocal style. But what I really like are the more ambitious tunes, eg the doo-wop style tunes like ‘Congratulations’, or the VERY Leonard Cohen-esque ‘Nothing’s Sacred’.
It is quite a long album, and there a few moments that feels like stylistic treading water, but they’re pretty rare. With this kind of genre, it’s all about how good the songwriting is – and it really is top notch throughout.
How nice to have a new discovery to plunder. I’m pretty certain this’ll be on my playlist for a long time to come. Cheers Brother Joey!
Glad you’re enjoying it David – it’s still delivery for me, time and time again.