The Vow will make a positive impression on many listeners with their latest single “Julia”. The deceptive simplicity of the performance wins you over from the first despite the subject matter; Graham Trust’s songwriting is a thoughtful reference to characters in George Orwell’s dystopian classic 1984 and rates as one of the oddest love songs I’ve heard in recent memory. It isn’t over indulgent in anyway – The Vow maintains a tight focus from the first but there’s never any sense of tension marring the performance. Despite the song’s grim lyrical setting, it has an airy and melodic approach that ingratiates itself with listeners from the outset and never releases its hold. The interlacing of electric and acoustic guitars are carried off without a flaw and the complementary performances from keyboards and drums fill out the song well.
I never heard of The Vow or can claim familiarity with their music until hearing this single. I am an instant fan. Graham Trust’s voice doesn’t enter the song from the first, but the introduction sets the stage for him nicely and many listeners, like myself, will be captivated by his voice when he does come in. He hangs with every word and there’s never any sense of coasting. There is a smattering of backing vocals scattered throughout the track, but Trust’s singing is more than capable of carrying the track. He may have lived through an extended layoff from the music world, but you’d never know it listening to this performance. His singing demonstrates all the canny aspects of veteran talent you would expect.
His lyrics are exceptional. He captures the spirit of Orwell’s characters without ever relying on the book in a heavy way – in the end, the song’s “characters” become every bit as much his own as the legendary English author’s. I enjoy his use of imagery and feel it really helps the song come alive for listeners. The easy mid-tempo pace of the track is an ideal fit for his phrasing and lyrical content alike and the production ensures we are able to enjoy every twist in his language and vocal melody.
The Vow relies on traditional instrumental strengths structured with an emphasis on style and texture. Guitars and drums are the foundational elements of the musical arrangement, but The Vow are unafraid to incorporate keyboards into their sound without any sense of the instruments competing for space in the mix. The keyboards rise more to the fore during the song’s second half and the central electric guitar figure recurring through the track gives it a nice hook for listeners to remember.
“Julia” is one of the more memorable singles I’ve yet to hear in 2019. The Vow sounds like a cohesive musical unit working at or near the peak of their powers and the maturity and confidence rife throughout this performance steers listeners well from the outset. I am sure the band’s forthcoming EP release will match the same high standards powering this performance and I am anxious to explore and hear more from this outstanding band.
by Bethany Page
The music of THE VOW has been heard all over the world due to the radio plugging services offered by Musik and Film Records. Learn more – https://musikandfilm.com