“The song is a wee response to all the ‘armchair experts’ who tell you what you can and can’t do, that it’s a terrible idea to step out and take a chance for fear of failing. I don’t mind falling out of trees because it turns out I love climbing them.” Johnny McFadzean, The Woods
Given the convictions behind ‘Armchair Expert’, it’s appropriate that the tune was written, recorded and produced entirely by Johnny McFadzean, aka The Woods. Even the video – a sublime stop-motion short that finds the singer in and out of a red leather armchair surrounded by the detritus of music and life – was a DIY project, setting a brilliant example of what can be achieved under one’s own steam. Of course, you need talent and you need ideas, and Johnny has both in spades, evident in the interweaving layers of warm and ambient vocal (shades of Beirut or C Duncan), and lilting, instrumentally complex dream pop that make ‘Armchair Expert’ such a hypnotic listen.
See The Woods live
Thurs 31 May: Chachacha Vintage, London N10
Sat 16 June: Sunset Sessions, YHA Treyarnon Bay, Cornwall