Pete Roe - The Merry-Go-Round EP

Craig Broad 25/06/2010

Rating: 4/5

How someone like Pete Roe can tour with the successful likes of Laura Marling, accompioning her as part of her live band aswell as being mentioned in the same breath as Mumford & Sons, and still, somehow find an ounce of time to write their own material is completely beyond me, but he has managed it with this, his second EP to date, "The Merry-Go-Round".

Firstly, of merit, is the artwork. Most are happy to settle for a square CD and a quickly made paper sleeve but not Roe, not at all. The CD case is so intricately designed, with such detail put in to its artwork, that the case alone would be a selling point for this EP. That aside, lets start talking about music, after all, that is what we all want to know about and I'm sure you all have the same thoughts as me. Roe has the tough task, having been name dropped aside his counter parts, of living up to the great expectations that fans of those artists have come to feel they deserve. Let me make it clear from the start, this isn't Mumford MK II or Marling MK II(perhaps the same thing currently), but more a different kettle of fish. Still acoustic but less, NME folk than his counterparts, Roe has a vocal tone much akin to The Decemberists' Colin Melroy and with a feel behind his music that is much more positive than a lot of distortion-less music doing the rounds currently. Opening track "Bellina" is a strong example of Roe's ability to be uplifting, the guitar melody sunny as the lyrics encourage you to put all your books away and take a trip on the ocean. "Oh Susannah" is a love song, with Roe pining for his perfect girl claiming that he will be hers between some beautiful vocal melodies. "Underneath The Apple Tree" is Roe possibly at his best, taking a stab at a Nick Drake Influence which works perfectly on the chorus as Roe sings, 'Where the path leads up their garden and the whole world is closing in, I am underneath the apple tree and I am waiting for something to begin'. The final track to the Ep is "The Merry-Go-Round", a slow contemplative way of ending the CD, taking away the sunshine of the previous three tracks and concentrating on Roes beautiful use of lyrics to create something that will give even the more cold hearted of music listeners a swift exchange of butterflies.

Every once in awhile a release comes along that really moves me, "The Merry-Go-Round" is that release, I highly recommend it!

Pete Roe Myspace