James McVey Shares All The Things

As heard on his recent debut solo EP Manabi, former Vamps man James McVey is relishing the freedom of working independently – his timeless singer-songwriter style the vehicle for him to express a sea of emotions and introspective thoughts, with his voice sounding stronger than ever a year after he underwent career-saving surgery. Now he takes that creative liberation further with this summer’s release of his upcoming EP Letters Home – five songs that were written and recorded as he toured Europe with Henry Moodie at the start of 2024. He introduces the EP by sharing its first track, All The Things.

James McVey

James McVey (Edward Cooke)
James McVey (Edward Cooke)

A product of missing home, All The Things shows how such an instantaneous process can so naturally capture the feeling of the moment. With no time to overthink or complicate things, McVey gets straight to the heart of what he wants to express: unadorned romance with a poetic touch. The music is just as warm and tender – a stripped-back style elevated by sparse and carefully considered production embellishments.

And when you’re writing in such a relaxed way, your collaborators tend to be whoever you happen to be with at the time – in this case his regular co-writer and live band member Alex Stacey and Henry Moodie of drunk text fame.

McVey says: “All The Things was written and produced on the tour bus between shows. It started at the front of the bus with Alex. The chorus came pretty quickly but we wanted to get a new set of ears on it. I called Henry up from downstairs and he started humming melodies. Before we knew it, we had the verse melody. Alex and I then worked on the lyrics over the next 24 hours and two days later we added it to our set on tour.

Listen to All The Things below:

“The song pertains to the feeling of leaving the one you love and recognising all the things you take for granted when you’re apart. I figured there’s no better place to test it out than the audience on tour. Writing, recording and performing a song in the space of a few days is something I’ve never done before. It was extremely liberating and inspired us to keep on writing on the road, ultimately resulting in the Letters Home EP.”

The rest of the Letters Home EP mixes up acoustic confessionals, stomping folk-rock and some more layered alt-pop compositions, all while saying the things that you might mean in the moment but then shy away from in the studio. After the slower evolution of Manabi, Letters Home further underlines how much the 30-year-old Chester man has to offer alongside his arena-filling, chart-topping success with The Vamps.

McVey’s month-long tour as special guest to Henry Moodie followed his debut sold-out headline show at Hoxton Hall. He is currently on the road for his first full headline tour and has completed four shows already, including a London date at Lafayette.

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