Calming River – Boats (2020)

Are you up for a harrowing meander across the unsafe ground of human emotions? If you are, ‘Boats’ by Calming River provides the dark ravines that you want to traverse. This unique single captures the dynamic song structure and finger-picked guitar Calming River has become known for. Awash with the darker emotions from anxiety to loss and confusion, it carries an emotional weight that will leave you shuddering

Joshua Malcolm is the man behind the music and is breaking the stereotype of the singer-songwriter. Using a reflective and enigmatic soundscape, he showcases alt-folk at its finest. The mood of the music is captured by Matthew Fleming in the chilling official music video.



‘Boats’ draws you into the dark ravine of human emotions with the first finger-picked note and word. From the first second, Malcolm’s vocals pull you in with an enigmatic flow. There is a softness to his performance that creeps up your neck like the whisper of something coming for you. His performance moves from a soft confusion to a more anxiety-inducing flow tinged with a sense of loss. The structure of the lyrics adds to the slippery ground you walk before they drop to toss you into the roiling finger-picking.

As the vocals create the uneasy journey through the canyon of human emotions, the melody forms the unstable ground you walk on. The finger-picking melody is on another level and is a wonder to listen to. However, this combines with a shifting deep bass that vibrates in the background for an ominous cloud lurking just over the horizon. If you were looking for a traditional alt-folk single, you have come to the wrong place. The captivating enigma of the melody is enhanced by the, at times, tentative vocals for a sonic experience second to none.



The official music video brings the meander of emotions into reality through a cinematic visual. The back and white video captures the darker emotions from the first second before taking you further into the rabbit hole. The emotional weight of the track is portrayed through a relatable yet cinematically beautiful visual.

Calming River calls you to walk through the dark ravine of human emotions through the enigmatic ‘Boats’. Washing you with loss, confusion and anxiety, the single leaves you feeling off-kilter in the best possible way. The music video captures the mood of the music through a cinematically wonderful monochrome visual.

Find out more about Calming River in his website, Facebook, Instagram and Spotify.

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