From the sounds of it, it might not be the last though. ‘Here’s Willy Moon’, the singer’s debut album, is pretty good. The strings that begin opener ‘Get Up (What You Need)’ are joined by a clever hip-hop beat, but there’s even more to it than that. Moon’s sound, and just about everything else about him, take a lot of influence from 50s rock and roll, and the whole vintage thing that just won’t die.
On a more positive note, the moody intro of ‘What I Want’ is absolutely excellent. It’s only in the last 30 seconds when it gets just a bit too energetic and ruins itself that it falls flat. It’s a bit like a toddler who’s worked out how to walk, but tries to run too soon. Moon’s found his sound, but it still needs honing.
Still, for a debut album it’s a brave attempt. ‘Fire’, with just the right tinge of darkness and minimal fanfare in the right moments, is a real treat. Lyrically, with mentions of Midas and Dionysis, it’s very smart; there should be more of this, instead of strange, practically outdated references about wanting to get the girl.
‘Shakin’’ doesn’t feel like it should be sung by a 23-year-old. It’s stomping, Moon’s vocals are gruff and deep, not what you’d expect to come out of a skinny white boy. The same comes for the sensual ‘I Put A Spell On You’.
Towards the end of the album, newest single ‘My Girl’ is an upbeat pop song, and is the best example of Willy Moon’s expert handling of retro rock and roll with a more modern sound. Closer ‘Murder Ballad’, whilst still good and a nice instrumental, feels tacked on after it; it probably would’ve benefitted being higher up in the tracklisting.
It’s hit and miss, but ‘Here’s Willy Moon’ kind of does what it says on the tin. It does a good job of completing our introduction to the London-via-New Zealand singer, and you can’t really ask for much more from a debut album.