Music Review: No One Is Safe Here by Rowan

© Maddie Branagan


No One Is Safe Here is the debut EP from Irish trio Rowan. Formed in Cork in 2019 by Dylan Howe (vocals, guitar and piano), Kevin Herron (guitar, backing vocals and keys) and Fionn Hennessy Hayes (drums and backing vocals), the band have come a long way in such a short time.

Playing with big names like Ariel Posen (one of my personal favourites), The Frank & Walters and TOUCAN, Rowan has tour experience both national and international.

Opening the EP is cheery track Moonlight. The introduction offers a bright sound with its jangly guitar and driving drums.   

Although electrifying throughout, the second chorus is where Moonlight really comes to life. Crashing in with a burst of energy the animated instrumentation keeps the track on an upwards trajectory. 

Moonlight is an excellent opening track to the EP with its spirited performance which is entirely uplifting. 

Next up is Big Wave. This track has instant energy which is evident with the classic jangly indie guitars. A hooky melody is met with a groovy bassline to give the track its vibrant nature. Big Wave is for sure going to be a huge crowd-pleaser. 

Halfway through the EP is Love Gets In The Way. This is a softer track filled with a heartfelt tenderness that shows the bands songwriting versatility. The instrumentation on Love Gets In The Way is simply stunning. 

Taking a different approach to the bright guitars and rolling drums the acoustic guitar accompanies an impassioned vocal performance from frontman Dylan. This is the type of track which allows you to do nothing but give it your full attention. 

© Zyanya Lorenzo

I Had A Dream is a continuation from the last track. A soulful piano is the main accompaniment for the opening. Carrying on the mood from Love Gets In The Way this track offers more of a sombre atmosphere compared to the heartfelt ambience.

I can definitely picture this track featuring in a classic rom-com heartbreak scene. Which is high praise, trust me. 

The ever-present guitars have a huge impact on this song. Fuzz filled and front and centre they really convey the story that the track is trying to tell. 

Before coming to a close, the spirit of No One Is Safe Here is lifted once more with You’re Not The One. From the get-go, you can tell this is going to be the type of song which you can’t stop yourself from tapping your foot to or bopping your head. 

The guitars have a sparkly tone which instils a feeling of hope. Crashing cymbals build up anticipation for the resolution of the track. You’re Not The One has a lighter than air feeling to it which brings a fun ending to the EP. 

No One Is Safe Here is an inspired debut EP from Rowan. Soft in nature yet solid in delivery each track has a cinematic quality. The overall feeling of the release radiates a warmth which makes the listener feel as if they have known the band all along, even if it is their first time listening.

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