Photo: Rich Gilligan

James Vincent McMorrow fights meaninglessness on “Never Gone”, announces new album

Irish singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer James Vincent McMorrow has shared his new single “Never Gone” and announced his seventh full-length album, Wide Open, Horses, out June 14 via Nettwerk.

McMorrow describes “Never Gone” as “the anchor of the record”, adding:

“It sums up the whole album; you’re just trying to fight meaninglessness. I always felt like I’ve been trying to find meaning so I could be remembered. When you don’t find it, it doesn’t feel good. I got to a point where I was like, ‘I fucking love this. I don’t care. If my friends, family, and people who know me as a musician love it, then I’m happy’. I regretted missing so many beautiful moments, because I’d get off stage like, ‘What’s the next opportunity?’ I’ve come to terms with the fact that when I die, I’ll be forgotten, and it’s okay. We all will. It felt ridiculous to fight it. Embracing it was very freeing. ‘Never Gone’ is just about appreciating what’s here for you in the moment.”

McMorrow says her “performed the entire album before it was recorded.” Recording lo-fi demos, he practiced the material and then brought Wide Open, Horses to The National Concert Hall in Dublin. He explains:

“The whole point was to expose the flaws and also highlight the special little moments. It was an odd experiment, but it worked great. The notion is so simple, ‘Write songs and perform them live’. Without cameras, they were the best shows I’ve ever played—which is interesting because no one knew the music! Everyone was just experiencing it though. I had friends in the lobby talking to strangers. Who talks to strangers anymore? It was lovely. It was a heartening experience for everyone involved.”

“Never Gone” is teeming with his familiar falsettos and finger-picked guitar in call and response with hand-claps and a kick-drum. McMorrow expands into an anthemic build of vocal layers and electric guitar reminiscent of a Jeff Buckley track. With “Never Gone” demonstrating the motility of his artistry, Wide Open, Horses is expected to be another consummate work.

Watch the live video of “Never Gone” below or find the studio version on streamers.

James Vincent McMorrow’s new album Wide Open, Horses is out on June 14 via Nettwerk (pre-order/save). You can follow him on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and TikTok.