Half Moon Run — Inwards & Onwards — EP Review

Indie | Folk | Rock

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Half Moon Run is a bit of a weird case for me; while the Canadian indie folk-rock group have been one that I have known about for a while, I still haven’t explored their material broadly. Half Moon Run was an example of the many artists that I dabbled into during my early days of using Spotify; it was a good period in time.

That being said, upon discovering that the band would be releasing a brand new EP in 2021, I saw it as the perfect opportunity to reconnect myself with the band’s atmospheric and near-spiritual sound, and redeem myself for overlooking the release of their Seasons of Change EP last year.

To give a background of what I knew of Half Moon Run already, their 2012 debut album Dark Eyes sticks out as the one that I discovered first. I also recall, that I may have even explored a tiny bit of their follow up effort, 2015’s Sun Leads Me On, as well.

But let’s move things on to the here and now, where Half Moon Run arrive with a six-track EP, which they have named Inwards & Onwards.

I did also manage to give the two teaser tracks a listen, in the week leading up to the release of Inwards & Onwards. Titled “How Come My Body” and “On & On” respectively, both of these tracks successfully retained that sense of soft whimsicality. I also love how these two tracks managed to be so engaging through such a stripped-back and intimate instrumental framework. That being said, I was pleased to see these two tracks leading the way for the remainder of the EP, upon its release.

That being said, there were plenty more great tracks to be enjoyed, by the time Inwards & Onwards was fully released. In-fact, there wasn’t really a track on that thing that wasn’t at least somewhat enjoyable to listen to. At my very meanest, I would say that one or two tracks lacked that kind of immersive impact; meaning that there could’ve been more added in to increase their sense of depth, to match the golden points of the album. But having said that, I do still feel like I’m clasping at straws a little bit.

At its very best points, I would even go as far to say that Half Moon Run reach a fraction of Bowie-esque theatrics in the vocal delivery and songwriting of some tracks. Or at the very least, there definitely feels like there is a slight tinge of nostalgia to tie this EP together in one appealing bow.

All in all, I feel that, by EP standards, Half Moon Run did a cracking job with Inwards & Onwards! It honestly feels like, thanks to the great sense of completion this EP carries, makes it feel one or two tracks away from sounding like a genuine full-length album. But more importantly than that, the wholesome, and immensely warm folk sound that Inwards & Onwards brims with, not only feels like a great reflection of what I enjoyed about the band in the first place, but a perfect vibe for this time of year.

Favourite Tracks: On & On | Fxgiving | Tiny

Least Favourite Track: It’s True

Glassnote Music | AWAL

Enjoyment: ★★★★ | Memorability: ★★★★ | Atmosphere: ★★★★★

Uniqueness: ★★★ | Satisfaction: ★★★★ | Narrative: ★★★

Final Score: ★★★★

My articles mainly revolve around music reviews and analysis. A bit like Anthony Fantano, but just a decade behind.