THE MIDNIGHT FOXES – RUNNING IN THE RAIN – PEPPER GATE – TELL TALE HEART

The Midnight Foxes are; Spike Flannery (Vocal), Joe Fox (Guitar/Vocal), Pavel Zeliankevich (Guitar), Gareth Allen (Bass), Rhys Jones (Drums/Synth). Based in the North of England, the band members answered an advert online looking to “create an unforgettable live experience”. If their live show is as spectacular as their studio work then The Midnight Foxes have most definitely achieved their aim. We here at the Send Me Your Ears studio are listening to three of the band’s singles, the most recent of which, Running In The Rain, is released today (14 October, 2022).

Running In The Rain

Running In The Rain is about trying to get over a bout of depression when the universe is against you. It’s about that moment when you finally lace up your shoes and get out there and it starts raining!

Running In The Rain starts with some cool stereo delay guitar with rain and thunder sound effects in the background. Some powerful electric guitar stabs begin what shapes up to be a truly fantastic building instrumental section that just keeps rising. The drumming at this point is spectacular – strong, tight and very punchy. A great full stop signifies the end of the instrumental section before the vocals come in.

We like the use of hard panned guitars and harmonies in the pre-chorus. By the time you hit the chorus, the track is positively euphoric, heavier guitars carry the chorus and another superb use of a full stop leads you into the second verse.

That all important second verse maintains your interest by adding in some more guitar. The separation of sections in this track is absolutely superb. A breakdown with spacey guitars and another superb build on drums is another great touch. The repeated guitars to end with a quick drum fill signify that somehow, almost five minutes have passed. We cannot praise this track highly enough.

Pepper Gate

Pepper Gate comes in immediately with clear and present vocals. It is easy to tell that this is the same band as the previous track, they have a style all of their own and are utterly nailing it.

We love the addition of harmonies and some highly skilled work on the toms. This is another powerful track. There’s some great use of drums coming in and out during the break down sections. Being used as a separate instrument rather than as an accompaniment, they come and go as necessary and thoroughly help to maintain the listeners interest.

The rise and fall in this track is, again, expertly crafted. The Floyd-like dreamy section is a nice touch. The heavily panned guitars works well in all of the tracks, but particularly here. We love how the panned left guitar stops and then builds back into the chorus. The dynamic landscape of this track is a joy to listen to.

Tell Tale Heart

Taking inspiration (we assume) from Edgar Allan Poe’s poem, we couldn’t help but draw comparisons to Alan Parsons album, Tales of Mystery and Imagination.

Tell Tale Heart begins on the sound of a heart beat. There’s much more reverb on this track than the previous two, but it totally suits the ballad style of the song. This is a real anthemic track with some superb “grab the air” moments!

The dreamy guitars used in this are perhaps a nod to Roger Waters and reminded us at times of his album Pros and Cons of Hitch-Hiking. Some shimmery work on the cymbals makes this track absolutely sparkle.

Despite being a ballad, this is another hugely powerful track with some of the best use of rise and fall that we’ve seen in a while. We loved the break down section with a chorus of bright and crisp reverbed vocals that just swell around your ears as you listen.

Ending on a single cardiac-monitor sounding guitar note and a slowing down heartbeat, this is a nice touch from a band that includes two NHS workers (Cardiologist and Anesthetist), a medical researcher, an archaeologist and a salesperson. Judging from the quality of musicianship on the tracks we’ve heard today, we here at Send Me Your Ears think it’s high time you guys got yourself a proper job as musicians!! 😉

Seriously though, the confidence just flowed out of the speakers like a band that had been performing in stadiums together for decades. A sound which is instantly recognisable as The Midnight Foxes, this high quality indie rock band have all the elements needed for one hell of a future ahead of them. The songwriting, the performance, the arrangements and the production are of exceptional quality.

From a production perspective, these tracks are all nicely represented in the high mids. To our ears they could use a tiny bit of extra fullness either side in the mids and highs. a boost centred around 750Hz and again in the top two octaves.A boost around 160Hz would bring the bass in a little more and fill out the low end nicely. To our ears there is a tiny resonance in the snare around 225Hz so maybe a careful surgical cut in the EQ there. The top end would balance out nicely with a small cut around 4kHz and a boost in the top two octaves. For a little extra fullness overall, try a small but wide boost right across the middle, centred around 1kHz. To be clear, these tracks are already awesome and certainly don’t ‘need’ anything.

The Midnight Foxes were a new name to the Send Me Your Ears team today, but judging by the quality of these three tracks, they are a name that we expect to be hearing a great deal more from. This is indie rock at its very best. We strongly urge you add this world class act to your playlist.