‘Wolves’ is the debut album release from Scottish singer-songwriter Michael MacLennan. ‘Wolves’ is an eclectic mix of both vocal and musical ability and the intricate blend of both effortlessly guides us through the album. Michael Maclennan has spent years honing his craft and is now ready to explode, or more rather saunter delicately, onto the music scene. With upcoming single releases in the form of ‘To The Fire and Avalanche It looks like Michael may have a solid musical career ahead of him.
Michael MacLennan is a grafter with some strong political and social views. This can be clearly heard in his debut single, ‘To The Fire. It is a harrowing anti-war song with some strong sediments. In fact this theme is reflected in several other tracks especially in The Old Tree. ‘Wolves’ is an emotionally charged album in parts but fails to impact as an overall collection. The album has many contrasting themes, some deep such as war and death and others shallow such as the jovial pursuit of romance. Rather than compliment each other it is clear that deeper more emotionally poignant songs have been diluted by the others.
Michael MacLennan is a great singer and it is clear that his voice is his strongest asset. However he is yet to lay down a unique vocal style. Listening to the album strong comparisons can be made to a wide array of bands and musicians. In the case of the first track Fall Down On Me strong shades of The Script and The Goo Goo Dolls can be heard. And I think this is a fatal flaw that requires immediate attention. If MacLennan is to have any success then he quickly needs to establish himself and his own style.
Michael MacLennan is a very talented musician. His years at the Royal Collage of music have stood to him and as a recording artist he may potentially go far. As a debut album, ‘Wolves’ is safe and sensible with an overall lack of emotional vulnerability. Songs like To The Fire and The Old Tree offer shades of hope for the future. If it is true that MacLennan has written two songs a day for the past year then this may very well not be the last we’ve heard from him.