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“Bang Bang” from McNally Waters

The elements that comprise the new single “Bang Bang” from McNally Waters, as well as its music video, aren’t unfamiliar to anyone with an ear for alternative Americana – its beat and vocal harmonies are sourced from a pastoral strain of poetry, while its narrative is scathingly emotional. What sets this song apart from similarly-stylized content out this fall is perhaps its soulfulness, its seamless mixture of influences, but more than any cosmetic or compositional features, the point it intends to make with listeners. In an era that needs musicians to be heroes and voices for change, McNally Waters are stepping up with some deeply moving work here. 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mcnallywatersband/

Though the video for “Bang Bang” isn’t quite as stirring as the song is on its own, it doesn’t have to do much more than it does to drive the passion in the play home to anyone within earshot of the melodies.

No matter how I analyze the bones of this track, I come to the same conclusion – it’s a really superb example of tonal expressiveness at its most evocative and efficient. You just don’t need the kinds of filler, both sonic and linguistic in form, when you’ve got the kind of organic spark this act does, and they were right to keep it out of the equation in their new release. 

McNally Waters aren’t going to make a believer out of everyone with “Bang Bang,” but for my money, they couldn’t have hit this one out of the park any better than they did. This song and its video go a long way towards silencing any and all potential critics of their songwriting style by exhibiting a multidimensionality so rarely encountered in the sounds of pop/rock in 2020, and if it’s a turning point for their mainstream breakthrough, all the better. 

Mindy McCall

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