Marc Carroll – Dust of Rumour

Looking like a successor to the Gallagher’s recently vacated throne, a quick browse through his discography shows a trail of music leading all the way back to 1989. This leaves me slightly shocked and very surprised that Marc Carroll’s music has eluded me until now.

Album opener Love Will Rule Our Hearts, with its simple, melodic refrain reminds me of the vocal style of Martin Coogan (The Mock Turtles) but a few tracks in and there’s very much a thoughtfulness to his voice quite similar to Bob Dylan, (a subtle rasp I detected in his vocal chords fuels this observation). It’s probably worth noting at this point that Dubliner Carroll can count Bob Dylan as a fan.

Now Or Never continues with an almost Britpop theme and I wonder if this album is fourteen years too late, (or fourteen years too early when you consider how trends come back around), but you can’t deny that this guy knows how to write a good tune and not forgetting that multi-instrumentalist Carroll plays everything (except drums on several tracks) you realise what a talent he is.

The Irish folk-ness of Against My Will points out that despite now living in Los Angeles Marc Carroll has in no way forgotten his roots. The beautiful harmonies (“…tell them no it isn’t so, that I have gone away against my will…”) and simple acoustic arrangement make for wonderful listening.

Recent albums Ten Of Swords (2003) and World On A Wire (2005) only received modest praise but its easy to see how Marc has lasted so long in the cut-throat world of the music industry. The softly sung Illusion And I shows a sensitive side rather different from the album opener.

An album that is perhaps too radio-friendly, it’s all too “nice” to trouble the charts but that doesn’t mean to say it should be overlooked. The upbeat Teenage Fanclub-esque You Just Might Be What I’m Looking For gets things going again before the wonderful instrumental Going Home greets us. With track titles such as Going Home, along with The Boy Who Dreamed and What’s Left Of My Heart, it sounds like Carroll is really pining for Ireland or at least reminiscing of glorious days gone by.

It’s around this moment that I’m struck by how short Dust Of Rumour is. At ten songs and just over thirty two minutes it’s a fine example of a well-tuned compilation of music that doesn’t hang around to get on your nerves but leaves you with a fond memory of what Marc Carroll is capable of.

Album closer, the five-minute A Dark And Lucky Night, has soaring vocals that brings proceedings to a close in such a positive manner it truly leaves you feeling warm inside.

Against My Will will be released as a double A single with non-album track Matty Groves, the video for which can be seen on Marc’s website. Matty Groves continues the folk feel of Dust Of Rumour and if you like Dust Of Rumour then you certainly won’t be feeling ripped off if you added this to your record collection, especially as it’s only available on limited 7″ vinyl release.

If you would like more information on Marc Carroll or you’d like to purchase the album Dust Of Rumour, you can do so at the following website: http://www.marccarroll.com

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