Five Things We Liked This Week – 18/10/19

Further Listening:

5. Brooke Bentham’s Sobering New Single

Following on from the release of two well received EPs, London-based songwriter Brooke Bentham returned this week with her latest single, All My Friends Are Drunk. Brooke is just off the back of a tour with Bill Ryder-Jones, who produced this single, and will be following it up next month with huge shows supporting Sam Fender.

Much of the appeal of Brooke’s songwriting lies in her impressive lyricism, a songwriter detailing the post-university fog of your early 20s, a time when insecurity looms large and the world is simultaneously full of opportunity and utterly terrifying. All My Friends Are Drunk is a musing on growing apart, an attempt to capture “that wishful longing for what was”, set to a backing of driving rhythm guitars and the steady clatter of cymbals. Sliding in neatly alongside the likes of Soccer Mommy or Hazel English, Brooke Bentham creates a world of hazy, tumbling emotions, this feels like the start of something huge.

All My Friends Are Drunk is out now on AllPoints. Click HERE for more information on Brooke Bentham.

4. Now You’re Just Somebody Friendship Might Already Know

We don’t often offer apologies to bands, however there are apparently no rules in the world anymore so, Friendship, we’re sorry. We’re sorry because we thought you were someone else, we’re not sure who, we were just convinced you didn’t sound like you do. On double checking you’ve been putting out great music for ages, and we’ve entirely ignored it because we thought we knew who you were, and it turns out we didn’t at all. Now, with the public service announcement out of the way, onto the wonderful music and the start of a brighter tomorrow.

Hailing from Philadelphia, Friendship have been releasing music since back in 2015, and are set to return next month with a brand new album, Dreamin’. This week the band have shared the latest track from it, the sublime You Might Already Know. A slice of atmospheric alt-country, vocalist Dan Wriggins has described the track as the closest he’s got to, “a good simple love song”, and we wouldn’t argueDan has cited the influence of Kath Bloom, and we can hear more than a hint of Dan Mangan in there as well, both songwriters who have always managed to craft something both utterly beautiful and delightfully simple out of the complexities of the human heart. Here Friendship seem to do just that, “I’m singing the same song: Come home, stay with me“, it’s straight forward, honest and entirely charming, and music doesn’t get much more wonderful than that.

Dreamin’ is out November 8th via Orindal Records. Click HERE for more information on Friendship.

3. Benjamin Spike Saunders Is Feeling The Benefit

Benjamin Spike Saunders wants to be a stand-up comedian apparently, attempt to bear that in mind throughout listening to his music. Describing himself as, “Bristol’s most professional Professional Songwriter”, Benjamin is something of a regular on the cities scene courtesy of his slew of bands, and recent dabbling in the solo arts. Today Benjamin releases his debut EP, Tonsil Wife, and earlier this week he shared the latest snippet from it, For The Benefit of Something Else.

Benjamin’s music pulls off that slightly odd trick of not sounding quite as lo-fi as it is, while it’s largely recorded to his mobile phone and there’s a healthy dose of crackle on the vocals, there’s waves of shimmering strings and a layered lushness that bely the cliché of home recordings. Benjamin has suggested this is a song about, “a tutorial for anyone wanting to have a clean kitchen but knowing that none of the mess is your own doing but powering through nonetheless”, however we’re struggling to see how anyone can make cleaning sound quite so heartbreaking. For all his talk of minor domestic disputes, Benjamin sounds like he’s singing about some doomed love affair; maybe it’s the voice, think Angelo De Augustine meets Nick Drake, or the exquisite slowness of it all, whatever it is he has a natural mastery of melancholy, he could probably make the Roobarb and Custard theme sound downbeat. A stand-up comedian you say? Perhaps to make people laugh, sometimes you have to make them cry first.

Tonsil Wife is out now via Leisure Records. Click HERE for more information on Benjamin Spike Saunders.

2. Tonight’s The Night For Katy J Pearson

Hailing from the largely unheralded musical setting of the West Country, Katy J Pearson’s music seems to exists in a perfect musical sweet-spot; enough gorgeous harmonies for the pop kids and enough chops for the country purists. After previously forming something of a family band with her brother, and recently signed to Heavenly Recordings, Katy has this week shared her first solo offering, Tonight.

Tonight is in some ways a classic pop-song, eyes meet over a crowded dancefloor, a romantic spark flashes and vulnerability soars, “sometimes we get away with it, sometimes we get burned, sometimes we can just learn from it, or we just get burnt”. Musically, the story sits atop a shuffling lead guitar, sprightly drum-beat and towards the songs closing some delicious trumpets, like Camera Obscura with a touch of California sunshine. A hugely impressive jumping off point, this is music to get lost in, and already we can’t wait to hear a lot more from Katy J Pearson.

Tonight is out now via Heavenly Recordings. Click HERE for more information on Katy J Pearson.

1. The Moon’s Getting A Real Reputation For Itself

Formed back at the start of 2018, Lunar Sounds are a Riot grrrl trio hailing from the ever fertile music scene of Leeds. The band first came to prominence in September last year with their debut EP, The Void, this week the band have returned with the first new material since then, in the shape of new single, Reputation.

A snarling slice of rapidly moving punk, the band have suggested Reputation is an exploration of, “how men view women, and how women often feel like they need to portray some ideal version of themselves to be found attractive”. With impressively yelped vocal harmonies, and jagged slashes of guitar, Reputation is delightfully to the point, “I locked you up, threw away the key, my heart is cold, you’re dead to me”. Adding just a light sheen of polish to their unadulterated, raw sound, Lunar Sounds are sounding out of this world.

Reputation is out now. Click HERE for more information on Lunar Sounds.

Header photo is Lunar Sounds by Ben Hutchinson.

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