Johnny Coull is a singer and songwriter based in Montreal. He carries the same spirit that is also alive in artists such as Van Morrison and Elton John and has performed his retro style at Northern festivals such as Montreal Fringe Fest, Indie Week Canada, and Folk Alliance Region Midwest. His awakening soulful style on the piano and deep moving voice sounds as if his music is derived from a prior era. Coull has blessed us with a sneak peak of his upcoming record “A Long Obituary,” by sliding his new single “The Orpheum” across the table.

His soulful style on the piano and deep moving voice sounds as if his music is derived from a prior era.

“The Orpheum” launches in with a Queen-like introduction. It incorporates a compelling set of notes on the piano leading into a swooning melody. One can just feel the passion in his fingertips as he plays. Coull takes an interesting approach to a romantic misfortune between two people and speaks of it from a third person point of view. While people regularly pay to view a film on a screen, “The Orpheum” instead narrows in on the tension between a man and woman taking place in the theater seats themselves. He speaks for the characters and sings “stays there until midnight, but only dreams in black and white, life becomes predictable, at least until the credits role.” Could this be Coull’s way of narrating an unscripted parallel story amongst the crowd? The tempo in the track is gradually built with suspense by his vintage piano rock artistry and slowly eases down before building it back up again. The anticipation played on by the instrumentals paired with the restless lyrics calls for a tastefully romantic tragedy. He sings that they were each “almost flesh and bones” by the end of the song. His use of metaphors and imagery are a key feature to the track. Johnny Coull uniquely took a twist on events and created a play out of a real-life situation. Without giving the characters he sings about any given characteristics, listeners are still able to imagine their feelings and feel the tension spreading amongst the theater for themselves.

Written by Carrigan Drallos


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