24 Jul 2021

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Torn Chorus - Single Review: Brave New World

14 Jun 2020 // A review by Peter-James Dries

Lockdown was a true test of one’s fight-or-flight instinct, a show of one’s character.

For some, it was an artist’s paradise. We were presented all the spare time the regular 9-5 grind doesn’t afford, and a hot bed of new emotions to classify and document.

For others it was a tomb for the creativity, the manifestations of their stifled imagination stripped of the ability to interact with the material world, as a ghost would be.

Ultimately, the choice was your own. You could either wither away under the weight of the tedium, choked by your home’s four walls, or take arms against the rising tide, and sail the sea of solitude. Reflect and grow, or lament and pine away.

Torn Chorus’ Franklin Davis was not one to lie down and miss this opportunity. Their lockdown trilogy was gestated, birthed, and released into the world, while others were bingeing series on Netflix, gnashing their teeth at our collective incarceration, and rebelling against the rules in place to save the lives of those around them.

These three pieces feel like reflections of different periods of the lockdown. Where the preceding releases, Tender Woman of Stone and Lockdown Blues dealt with the initial feelings of helplessness we felt when facing our own human fragility, Brave New World, the final piece in the lockdown triptych, captures that optimistic feeling before the end.

It reflects on all that is good in humanity, the sacrifice of the few in the name of the many, and looks forward to a world changed for the better after this period of reflection. Hindsight may prove this optimism a product of naivety, as it did for Miranda stranded on the island of Prospero. I look forward to the sequel trilogy that deals with the realisation that humanity will revert to their wicked ways in the comfort following this storm our invisible adversary has cast.

The classic bluesy rock sound of Torn Chorus fills a void in the modern musical landscape, and taps an untouched market. It’s an apt style for songs that reflect on a simpler time before the virus, and an idealised world following it. Had I the authority, I would coin this style “Zealandia”. This newly named genre is defined by intricate guitar licks over the blues riff staples of classic Americana, with the local twist our absurd accent brings to anything we try our hand at. It’s simultaneously refreshing and nostalgic. A window into both the past and the future.

Five stars.

You can find Torn Chorus on Spotify. The accompanying video for Brave New World is available on Youtube.

Rating: ( 5 / 5 )

About Torn Chorus

Torn Chorus is the performing name of Franklin Davis, a songwriter, musician and photographer, based in the suburb of Mt Albert in Auckland, New Zealand.

Franklin plays acoustic guitar, electric guitar, bass guitar and keyboards and he records and mixes his own music.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Torn Chorus


Wake Up Call
Year: 2020
Type: Album
Lockdown Trilogy
Year: 2020
Type: EP

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