Five Things We Liked This Fortnight – 03/08/18

Further Listening:

5. Adwaith Are Feeling At Home

Already strong contenders for the best band to come out Carmarthen, Adwaith are the trio of Gwenllian, Hollie and Heledd. After a number of well received singles, the band are ramping up to release their debut album later this year, and have this week shared the latest taste of it, new single Gartref.

Translating as, At Home, Gartref is a song about “a longing for something which isn’t clear. What is home? Where is it?” With each new track, Adwaith seem to take the listener to some new musical landscape; in Gartref’s case, it’s a darker, gloomier place than before. The percussion sounds bright and driving, as pulses of bassy synth and muted, processed vocals create a dense engulfing wave of noise that drags you down into the darkness with it. Outspoken, creative and ludicrously talented, Adwaith aren’t just the future of Welsh music, they might be the future of music full stop.

Gartref is out now via Libertino Records. Click HERE for more information on Adwaith.

4. Ellis Takes Us Down The Drain

Whether it’s the singer in Trust Fund or the violinist in the Bad Seeds, the name Ellis conjures up plenty of pleasant musical memories for us. To that list we can now add Ellis, the pseudonym of Canadian songwriter,  Linnea Siggelkow. Up until now, Ellis’ reputation has been based entirely on a series of live dates with the likes of Soccer Mommy and Pale Hound, however this week we’ve finally got some recorded material to go on, in the shape of debut single, The Drain.

The Drain about which Ellis sings is more emotional than plug-hole related as Linnea explains, “it’s about self-sabotaging a relationship because you’re afraid of how deep it’s getting, but then saying ‘fuck it’ and diving in anyway.” That euphoric feeling of throwing yourself in at the deep end is equally present in the music, as driving rhythms are cut through with gorgeous twinkling synths and Linnea’s, easy, almost detached vocals. With an EP coming later in the year, Ellis’ potential is clear to see, and where she goes next could be fascinating.

The Drain is out now. Click HERE for more information on Ellis.

3. Dream Nail Bid For The Merkury Music Prize

Sometimes protest, feminism and equality can get a bad rap for being not a lot of fun: anyone suggesting that clearly hasn’t been to see Dream Nails play! The self-styled, “feminist punk witches”, might have serious stuff to say, yet they quite rightly realise that you don’t have to deliver it as a lecture, why protest quietly and politely, when you can scream and turn it into a a party. This week the London-quartet have shared their latest single, Merkury.

The track brings Dream Nails’ hitherto unexplored interested in astronomy to the fore, as guitarist Anya Pearson explains, “a Mercury retrograde lurches us all into crises like a toxic ex walking back into your life uninvited. This song is a lesson for those who don’t know what havoc it can cause. Consider yourself warned!” Musically, Merkury adds a pulsating disco-beat to the band’s trademark punk-energy, there’s even a touch of the tongue in cheek style of the Long Blondes to the vocal delivery. Merkury is a track that’s more playful than we’ve been accustomed to from Dream Nails, yet it still has a more serious side, as singer Janey Starilng, explains, “astrological phenomenons like this are sometimes the only way to make sense of our fucked up world. They’re comforting.”

Merkury is out now. Click HERE for more information on Dream Nails.

2. Mothers Are In The Pink Of Condition

It was only a few weeks about we championed the returns of the now Philadelphia based, Mothers, yet we’ll make no apology for raving about them here again today. The band, led by chief songwriter and vocalist Kristine Leschper, are set to release their second record, Render Another Ugly Method, in September, and have recently shared the monumentally ambitious new single, Pink.

Pink is a record that breaks all the rules of a single, or a feature track if you prefer the more horrendous modern term. The track is over seven minutes long, features more tempo changes than most albums, and regularly allows the whole thing to drift into walls of dissonant noise – all of which are exactly why Mothers are so wonderful. This is a band playing by nobody else’s rules, the brutal intimacy of their debut record seems to be giving way to something more jagged, more jarring, more urgent than ever before. Describing the track, Kristine has suggested it is a series of, “memories within cars – cars of my childhood, recent past, and present”, the track reflects on how this most odd of settings can draw us back to our youth, reduce us to an almost childlike state of being completely out of control; the cavorting, tumbling music is a perfect match to this feeling. There’s something terrifying about watching a band you love mature and grow; the fear that the essence of their sound you loved can somehow be lost, yet on the evidence presented so far, while Mothers might be evolving at an alarming rate they sound as vital, beautiful and inspiring as ever.

Render Another Ugly Method is out September 7th via ANTI- Records. Click HERE for more information on Mothers.

1. Add Heat To Doe And It’ll Grow

It would be fair to say London-trio Doe are approaching their second album from a considerably different place to their debut. After the massed critical acclaim that came the way of their 2016 record, Some Things Last Longer Than You, the band have toured the world, played huge stages and wowed at SXSW. Now signed to renowned indie-labels, Big Scary Monsters (UK) and Topshelf Records (US), the band have this week detailed the September release of their second album, Grow Into It, as well as sharing new single, Heated.

Discussing the record, singer and guitarist Nicola Leel has suggested it is about, “the ageing process and growth”, and how unlike so many punk records would suggest, getting old doesn’t have to be a bad thing, “Grow into It is about finding light and freedom in age and finding autonomy in death.” On the evidence of Heated, it doesn’t seem to just be lyrically that Doe are dealing with growing up, their sound too seems to have matured; from the nicely muted intro, where the two guitars play off one another beautifully and the drums clatter and disappear with disorienting irregularity, to the triumphantly noisy crescendo, which nods to acts like Pavement or Menance Beach. Lyrically, the tracks plays out in the aftermath of a blazing row, and largely seem to question whether it was even worth the energy expended, “this is a conversation that’s going nowhere, before you did it maybe you should have thought it through.” Heated is a sparkling return for the band, they’ve never sounded more confident or coherent, and bodes well for what could be one of the year’s most exciting records.

Grow into It is out September 28th on Big Scary Monsters (UK/EU) and Topshelf Records (US). Click HERE for more information on Doe.

Header photo is Doe by Andrew Northrop 

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