Indie pick of the week: Robb Murphy

Stephanie Sokol for The Pit

Robb Murphy is a singer-songwriter from Belfast, Ireland. His sound has been compared to Damien Rice, Tom Baxter and Belle & Sebastian. Photo/Robb Murphy
Robb Murphy is a singer-songwriter from Belfast, Ireland. His sound has been compared to Damien Rice, Tom Baxter and Belle & Sebastian. Photo/Robb Murphy

Singer-songwriter Robb Murphy’s music is deep and inspiring, reflecting on life through stories of falling in love, and finding yourself.

With acoustic riffs and synthesizer pop instrumentals, Robb’s songs take listeners on a journey to another place. His sound is reminiscent of Death Cab for Cutie and Guster, with the lyrical depth of City and Colour.

Growing up in a musically-inclined family in Comber, Ireland, Robb was exposed to a variety of genres, including country, ’60s  and indie sounds. These genres were part of the inspiration for his sound.

“Many things influence my music – I listen to many different genres: dance, country, folk, indie, pop, soul, ambient,” Robb said. “I can usually find something in a genre that I can appreciate.”

Robb started making music was when he received a keyboard for Christmas. He went on to also teach himself guitar and harmonica, learning on trumpet and trombone at school.

Later, Robb moved to Belfast to study music technology at Queens

Photo/Robb Murphy
Photo/Robb Murphy

University. Though songwriting and music are his passions, he works also as a music engineer.

Robb’s songs are relatable, covering universal themes. He said his process for writing is different each time – sometimes tracks are planned based on his thoughts, while other times he just hits record and performs whatever comes to mind.

“Lyrical inspiration comes from life itself, the things that I see, places that I have been or hope to be, experiences I have had,” Robb said. “I try to put an element of positivity in a song somewhere.  I have been describing my music as acoustic electronic pop, and comparisons have been made with Damien Rice, Tom Baxter and Belle & Sebastian.”

According to Robb, his song “What do I say” is ambient acoustic and electric pop. The video shows two sides of a person – comparing the fast and stressful side of life to times of relaxation and escape from the everyday.

“I have varied songs because life can be so varied, and I was also experimenting in the studio quite a lot,” Robb said.

A music video for “When Silence Comes” will be released soon, as the last single from Robb’s new album “Take a Stand,” in addition to extra songs. He is also in the process of recording his second album and touring.

“The music I write helps me get though things, it’s my release,” Robb said. “When I listen to artists I like, they can let me escape, or be a comfort.”

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