Irish singer-songwriter Gavin Murphy has released a moody new single called ‘The Sound of Heartbreak’. An ear-worm that will wriggle and nestle its way into your noggin. It’s the second single released off his current debut album 45 RPM (Replay Past Memories) and details one of the most common afflictions known to man or woman. Murphy, who lives on Ireland’s northwest coast but hails from Dublin’s Northside, says “heartbreak is a rite of passage that nobody escapes”. He believes you must suffer from it and inflict it over and over again until you learn from it and “finally make peace with the scars”.
It is unclear which side of the heartbreak coin Murphy was on when he wrote this song, whether he was the casualty or perpetrator, but repeated lines describe the moment a relationship falls apart. Murphy sings: “Cold words come down the phone, the sirens start their singing…Accusations fill the air, excuses tried and proven.” All the while he repeats the familiar refrain throughout, “the sound of heartbreak.” Murphy continues later: “You thought you were immune, you thought you got it right, it fell apart before your very eyes… You tried to change the course, reality dropped in.”
His words are direct, unerring and the music cradles them. The songs repeating lyrics remind you of the recurring memories and conversations replayed in your head after love is lost. Murphy is also the lead guitarist and band manager of the successful Smiths tribute band These Charming Men, which he formed in 1995. His vocals seem inspired by 80s indie-rock and are somewhat Morrissey-esque or even reminiscent of fellow countryman Bono from U2. They are coolly delivered and accompanied by Saoirse Kavanagh’s tender backing vocals. Robbie Malone’s bass is deliberate and smooth and the drums by Paul Byrne, are steady and driving. The nostalgic track also includes some wonderful guitar licks and a bittersweet solo. While heartbreak is painful to experience and painful to watch, it’s great to listen to.