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James Vincent McMorrow

The Black Box

Irish singer-songwriter James Vincent McMorrow will perform at the Black Box Theatre on Thurs 5 December as part of an Irish national tour. Tickets are available this Friday, at 10am.

McMorrow has just released his seventh studio album, Wide Open, Horses, via Nettwerk Music Group. The album release follows the singles "Never gone," "Give up", "Call me back", and "Things we tell ourselves" and the announcement of an extensive tour across Ireland and North America. Wide Open, Horses is a candid snapshot of everything that has brought McMorrow to this point. The album signifies a retaking of his narrative, a freeing self-acceptance, and a rebuilding of both his sense of self and his connection to music.

McMorrow says on the album, "To me, the album is about finding relief from the cycle of life’s pressure. I don’t think the theory ‘modernity equals better’ holds much water these days. The more technology we add, the more unhappy everyone seems to be. I don’t want to move backwards, but I felt a sense of nostalgia and happiness in the album. It would be grandiose of me to think I could offer you some profound release through words and lyrics, but maybe I can…The job is to make a record I love and hopefully offer a respite. Maybe we can all get back to a life where we aren’t so obsessed with trying to seek out meaning from absolutely everything.”

James Vincent McMorrow has beckoned listeners to open their minds and hearts since his emergence in 2010. Along the way, he gathered over 1 billion streams across an expansive catalog. Among many standouts, “Higher Love” went BPI Gold in the UK and ARIA platinum in Australia. His cover of Chris Isaak’s “Wicked Game” soundtracked the trailer for Season Six of HBO’s Game of Thrones and generated over 130 million Spotify streams on its Live At Killkenny Arts Festival version. Toppling charts, 2016’s We Move notably debuted at #1 in Ireland. At the same time, he lent his voice to “Hype” from Drake’s multiplatinum blockbuster Views, “I’m In Love” from Kygo’s Cloud Nine, and “Run Away” from dvsn’s Morning After, among others. 2022’s surprise album The Less I Knew arrived to critical acclaim as Variance attested, “It makes for the perfect listen in the midst of these complicated times, brimming with emotion and candidly confronting struggle while also looking to a brighter day.” Meanwhile, he’s sold-out tours on multiple continents, even packing the world-famous Sydney Opera House twice.

In 2023, he brought Wide Open, Horses to life—on stage. He booked two nights at The National Concert Hall in Dublin, recorded a handful of lo-fi demos, practiced the material for a week, and then hit the stage. Phones weren’t allowed, but McMorrow recorded it to “see what worked and what didn’t work.”

“I literally performed the album before it was recorded,” he smiles. “The whole point was to expose the flaws and also highlight the special little moments. It was an odd experiment, but it worked great. The notion is so simple, ‘Write songs and perform them live’. Without cameras, they were the best shows I’ve ever played—which is interesting because no one knew the music! Everyone was just experiencing it though. I had friends in the lobby talking to strangers. Who talks to strangers anymore? It was lovely. It was a heartening experience for everyone involved.” Galvanized by this energy, he hit the studio and assembled Wide open, horses.

In Wide Open, Horses, McMorrow rewards audiences with remarkable openness and vulnerability. From the uncertain first performances of these songs to an unsuspecting audience, inviting his young daughter Margot to record the heart-wrenching yet playful duet on "give Up," to even recording "stay Cool" in a single take, McMorrow lays himself bare. By reclaiming his identity, he has crafted an album that is beautifully transparent and honest.

Standing Concert / 18+



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