Review by David Cirone
Morning Glory are back in top form in their latest CD release, Patchwork. The indies garage rock band from Gifu had a few surprise hits at the tail end of the last decade, but took a five-year break following 2010’s all-cover album Magical Mystery Tour. With Patchwork, they’ve returned to the catchy hooks and and powerful lyrics that marked their early successes.
The title song, “Patchwork”, highlights the 3-piece rock band’s strengths — tight songwriting, an irresistible chorus, and the knockout charisma of vocalist/guitarist and lead songwriter Rimina. Once again mixing Japanese and English lyrics, she proclaims “I’m a terrible loner… I’m a terrible dreamer…”, singing a universal message for the imperfect who are still brave enough to try coloring their lives with some hope.
After such a long absence, the style of Patchwork was immediately recognizable to me, bringing back the feeling of my favorite tracks “Everything” (from 2009’s Just One Way) and “Remember” (from the 2009 EP). But now Rimina’s youthful spunk has transformed into emotionally-grounded conviction, and the difference in delivery and songwriting adds staying power to personal songs like “Compass”, where Rimina finds the one person who will give her direction as she gets lost in a world that grows bigger and emptier more quickly than she can keep up.
Even with its serious messages, Patchwork still has fun. “Gimme Gimme”, written by bassist and band co-founder Kanako, is one of the catchier, upbeat tunes, begging “More/give me give me sweet candy/I know that you have it” Kanako’s bass work also gets a few stand out moments in “Hero (Kari)” and “White Theater”, backed by the band’s new drummer Nakamu. Just so you know Morning Glory is still ready to have fun, Patchwork ends with the all-English song “Star”, where the power of a lover’s words are like “sword and magic” that can even slay a dragon.
3. Gimme Gimme
4. Hero (Kari)
5. White Theater
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