It’s been over two years since Lewis Watson self-released his first EP, and he finally dropped a long-awaited album on the 7th July, a few weeks later than his original announced released date. This was due to Watson wanting to make sure everything was right before releasing it, showing exactly the attitude he has towards his creations.
Originally recording cover videos in his hometown bedroom in Oxford, alongside a few comedy skits and tag videos, Lewis Watson proceeds to mature his guitar and song writing skills as his fan base flourishes. The Morning has a total of 11 songs and a hidden track, featuring a few old favourites dating back to his first EP It’s Got Four Sad Songs On It BTW (‘Windows’) to new material first heard on this album.
All of the songs tell great stories, using his heartfelt voice and a guitar Lewis Watson delivers honest earnest messages. It’s not hard to be won over right from the opening track as the soft beats kick in accompanied by his vocals. ‘Stones Around the Sun’ is the realisation he has about how insignificant humans are. Other than his portrayal of relationships which were the spine of his first EP, songs on this album demonstrate the wide scope of narratives Watson can take on with convincing honesty.
Lewis Watson has always been humble and down to earth in spite of every success he has achieved. ‘Outgrow’ is a simple but poignant nostalgic reflection on how much he and his siblings have grown from their childhood days “just having fun” and “stayed up to count the stars”. As the chorus rolls in, added instruments make the song a louder cry questioning how much they have all changed, showing his awareness of the journey he has been on. ‘Close’ which first appeared on his fourth EP Four More Songs, was driven forward by the (comparatively) more powerful percussions as he narrates the tale of a little escape with the girl he wants to be kept close by.
My personal favourite is closing track ‘Castle Street’, starting with just vocals, then the drum beats add on. Even though the emotions are piled on as he asks “if we are done, then how come I feel love?” the track continues to stay mellow. The multiple vocal tracks help to build up the aura of the song and give it a textured soundscape, further strengthening the strong emotional effect. Fully expressing the conflicting emotions at the near end of a relationship, this track showcases Lewis Watson’s signature poetic lyrics and empathetic emotions of a relatable singer songwriter.
The whole album packs an emotional punch but it is neither particularly heart pumping nor balladry; it is simple, mild and moving. The Morning is so compelling and comfortable to listen to, with undeniable talents seeping through every song. Those who have yet to hear of his materials may find the style of the songs on the album repetitive, and he stayed within his usual scope of musical creations, but he has definitely travelled far from his early days releases; The Morning is a captivating debut.