The Brighton quartet have explored the unmerciful clutches of an anti-utopia in this eerily enchanting slice of alternative-rock.
Take the fantastical gloom of Radiohead’s opus In Rainbows, the neuroticism of Yorkes lyricism romanticising the intricacy of the human mind. Now throw in the transcendence and mainstream appeal of Coldplay’s Parachutes and you’d be on your way to scratching at the surface of Midlight’s artistry.
The Emergency Song does what it set out to do, apprise and disturb the natural order of things. There’s a palpable aura of spirituality ingrained within its bones, so much so that it wouldn’t be out of place at a shamanic ceremony being warbled in front of the flickering glow of a campfire; but don’t let that comparison detract from its savoir faire, this a contemporary rune not a ritualistic dirge. Caught within a dystopian hallucination, the scenic blend of harrowing strings and lead singer George Ireland’s brittle cadence rips you away from the comfort of reality, and yet you can’t help but feel enthralled by every second spent away from it.
Written just before the pandemic, not only does it foreshadow the chaos of lockdown, but it toys with our delicate equilibrium and its fragile existence. Ireland’s linear narrative personifies our systematic society, where the chaos of disruption meant crippling isolation for some, leaving a world where ‘all the rats have gone back to their holes‘, a lyric that underlines the habitual and mechanical culture of modern society.
In the absence of live shows, the auspicious four-piece spent the bedlam of 2020 recording in their self-built studio – the fruits of which were the brooding ‘Sink to the Level’ and aptly named ‘Pandemonium’. This single finds itself between a rock and a hard place, but with every second that ticks the hard outer shell becomes eroded down by the hope of tomorrow. With normality slowly starting to resume, the industrious outfit now turn to the optimism of 2021 for inspiration, and with any luck turning a so called emergency into a cry of wolf.