Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 18 December 2014

Audience is enthralled by tales from dark side

In the year since he played his debut Irish gig to a handful of punters at the Black Box, John Murry's status has skyrocketed.

With a rave-reviewed album under his belt, he's now big enough to headline the Empire Music Hall, and the historic venue suited the Mississippi native's atmospheric stylings.

Murry's weekend performance was a dark and largely serious affair, though he retained the self-deprecating sense of humour that marked out that previous Belfast show.

"We're very professional," the 34-year-old singer joked as he and his band tuned up and switched guitars. It provided some much-needed respite from the heavy-duty material.

Murry wasn't so much singing as howling into the abyss, and with prescription drug addiction and a heroin overdose behind him, he has lots to howl about. As ever, the dark recesses of life made for compelling art, and the audience hung on the messy-haired frontman's every utterance.

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Spending time with family will help relieve stress. It's comforting to be surrounded by those who understand your quirks. In your public life, you feel like you always have to explain yourself to colleagues. This becomes incredibly draining. To add insult to injury, you've had difficulty finding an appropriate job for your level of expertise. Instead of holding out for the perfect opportunity, you should take a low level job that yields regular pay.More