Britain's Mike Marlin has carved out a niche for himself by creating music that sounds the way being followed by tragedy must feel. He's preoccupied by discord, and his songs thrive on the tension that builds between his clashing melodies and throaty, low vocals.

Marlin's story is a classic rebel's tale, and it's no wonder his contradictory tastes have led him to produce such haunted songs. An Oxford dropout, he educated himself in dingy venues, catching the likes of Elvis Costello, Graham Parker, Siouxsie and the Banshees and the Cure.

Initially, he didn't put much thought into making music himself. It wasn't until a quarter-century later that he ditched his desk to make the album that had presumably been brewing inside him all along.

Not a year after completing the debut, Marlin began packing venues and enjoying the fruits of cult fame. To celebrate Marlin's upcoming inaugural visit to the United States, we're giving away 'The Murderer' as today's free MP3. The first single from his latest full-length, it's a stark account of losing love.

"Time is the one thing none of us has, but we waste so much of it," Marlin told "Once I had the metronomic guitar riff, I knew the song had to be about that. We spent two days in the studio recording wind-up toys, operatic backing vocals, over the top strings and anything else we could lay our hands on. We ended up with a madcap three minutes that sounds to me like a soundtrack to a film that Tim Burton hasn’t made yet. I don’t think it was time wasted!"

'Grand Reveal' drops on May 28. Two days later, he begins his U.S. tour with the Stranglers. A full list of dates is available here.

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