On Saturdays, the Guide supplement comes with The Guardian newspaper. And in there, there’s a list for all the things that one can do for the following week, listed by town. The town of Darwen made a rare appearance in amongst it’s ranks in late August with one, solitary entry – the showing of 2010 movie ‘Valentines Day’. perhaps it’s that lack of anything to do – or anything interesting to do at the very least – that inspires it’s residents to try and do something useful with their time. from this bizarre backdrop comes the work of Wes Emmison, who, when he’s not drumming for Monster Island, records under the name My Shepherd Mouse.
As with any good solo artist, there’s more than a hint of the diamond in the rough about the efforts Wes puts out – a mercurial quality that runs through. The songs are a mish-mash of different ideas and different aesthetics, generally underlined with lo-fi production values. The sheer lack of commercial opportunities that this will bring are to be revelled in – this fits no niche, markets no gap in the market or jumps on any passing trends. It is clunky and ill fitting, but gloriously so – the antithesis of the droves of singer songwriters who cling onto bland platitudes. You can sense shards of pop hidden amongst all the clanking of instruments and slightly-out of tune guitar, and that’s more than enough to leave you wanting more. if you’re throwing a gig in the near future, My Shepherd Mouse is definitely the man you should get to open up to the handful of people who turn up when the doors open.