Richard Walters – ‘U’
‘I was somewhere lost in England’ are the opening words on this powerful song about loss, love, hope and hopelessness. Richard Walters despairs over mistakes he’s made and asks his lover: ‘Will you wait for me in London?’ There are strings, understated electronics, huge guitars and a heartbreaking delivery of the lines: ‘I should do anything for you’. The video by Matthew Cooper is a visual treat and equally poignant.
Sl0tface – ‘Bright Lights’
You should know by now just how good Sl0tface are but if you don’t, this soon-to-be live favourite will introduce you in some style. Slightly slower than what we’ve heard from the Norwegian band before, it’s a song about escape, especially from personal issues. Haley Shea opens up by describing how even the most mundane tasks can inspire the most important thoughts: ‘I wipe the crumbs from the plate and ask what’s next for us?’ She then lays her feelings bare with a heart-rending repeat of ‘I’m crushed, crushed, crushed’ before stating how she sometimes hides behind her stage persona, even if it’s not the healthiest thing to do: ‘I need that bright light shining in my eyes, take me away from the edge of the stage’.
October Drift – ‘Cherry Red’
We saw October Drift at this year’s Summer Westival and they’re the kind of band you just know won’t be hanging around in smaller venues for too long. They’re hard working, are passionate when playing and have some hugely impressive indie anthems. ‘Cherry Red’ is a song that owes a debt to The National, but that’s not a bad thing. With Ian Curtis-style vocals stating: ‘Cherry red, like the blood that’s rushing to my head’ and ‘the rain is endless, we are defenceless’, there’s also something deliciously dark about their sound.
Drawstring – ‘School/Chicago Town’
Opening like a Moose Blood song and with lyrics about sex and social issues that occur during school years, Drawstring are a band who are happy to open up about all sorts of situations. Signed to our friends at Beth Shalom records, the band then start to doubt their choices: ‘If I stayed in school, would I give it all up’ and ‘If I didn’t care, why would I bother?’ They also state ‘I hate him, and he hates me’ before some finger-tapped guitar signals a change in direction and maturity. This is shown in the lyrics: ‘I’ve spent most of this song getting worked up over nothing’. Drawstring sound like an emo-pop duo with a big future ahead.
Fair Mothers – ‘Blind’
Acoustic strums open this short song that combines the macabre side of The Moldy Peaches with the dark and self-loathing of early Frightened Rabbit. Kevin Allen and special guest Kathryn Joseph’s vocal interplay adds a dimension to the opening lines, while when Kevin takes over on sole duty, he doesn’t disappoint. He accuses the song’s subject matter of stealing ‘all his ideas’ and ‘all his fears’ before then delivering the eye-opening and rather cruel line ‘I don’t care about your fucking cats’. It’s a song of heartbreak and revenge which compels you to listen further… we can’t wait to hear more.