Music Review – Reno McCarthy

EP: Man of the City

Artist: Reno McCarthy
EP: Man of the City

The creation of modern music is all about finding your own unique sound. That isn’t as easy as it sounds, considering that every day we are constantly bombarded with whatever song happens to be at the top of the charts that week. However, despite this, solo musician Reno McCarthy has been able to create something that is inspired by pop, funk, jazz, and dance music, but transcends the typical sounds and has given life to something that is truly unique.

Man of the City is Reno McCarthy’s latest EP, and features 5 tracks. Originally from Cambridge, UK, this 20-year-old musician left the UK to study at Montreal’s music school, CEGEP de St-Laurent, as a jazz guitarist majoring in classical composition. Inspired by bands like Coldplay, Rolling Stones, and Oasis, Reno’s sound also resembles U2, Mobile, and David Bowie.

Driven by a desire to create music that is positive and upbeat, Reno focuses on sounds that will get people up and dancing. Man of the City includes a wide variety of instruments, many of which are played by Reno, who also writes, produces, and arranges all of his own songs. In addition to recording, Reno plays live at several venues around Montreal and will be playing in Ottawa, Montreal, and Kingston this month. Be sure to check out locations and times on his website if you live one of these cities and are interested in checking Reno out live.

“Just About To Get Happy” and “So” are my favourite tracks on Man of the City. “Just About To Get Happy” features slightly muted vocals reminding me of U2 and Coldplay. But the strong jazz and funk influence is so incredible and different that I couldn’t help but love this song. Given the title of the track and the upbeat funk rhythm you will find yourself moving to the steady beat and the song goes on. As the album moves onto the next track you can definitely feel yourself growing happier.

“So” includes some very strong pop influences, but the rhythm is closer to that of modern dance music. The synthesizers also add a level of jazz and classic rock to the song, with the resulting sound being so different from anything out there that it is almost impossible to effectively describe the music. The vocals are a combination of the typical U2 singing style with something different, something that reminds me of early Goo Goo Dolls. “So” is definitely my favourite track on Man of the City.

Overall, Reno did a fantastic job on his latest EP. He features many of his diverse abilities as a musician and showcases his amazing talent. Man of the City is available online on Reno’s website, bandcamp, and iTunes.

Samantha Stevens is an aspiring writer who loves combining her love for literature with photography, painting, music, and all creative pursuits.

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