Track Of The Day: New Haunts – ‘Escape’

Born from a desire to take back control of a lonely summer, Bristol based darkwave artist New Haunts‘ (aka Alice Sheridan) has shared her new single ‘Escape’. The song is a sci-fi synth encoded five minutes of yearning yet optimistic self-expression, and is one of two upcoming singles which will be included on her second LP, expected for release in Autumn 2019.

Speaking about the new track, Alice explains: “This song came into existence purely to facilitate my own escapism during a time when life felt very physically and mentally limiting. For various reasons I had to spend a lot of time cooped up on my own last summer, and I’m someone who gets cabin fever after a day so I was crawling up the walls. In order to preserve my own sanity I figured that I wouldn’t write something sombre or disconcerting for once – I wanted to write something dream-like and freeing; an escape-route away from everything. I hope it takes the listener there too.”

Produced by Kindest Cuts, New Haunts will be performing her music live at The Finsbury Pub in London on 29th March in support of Terminal Gods (RSVP here). Listen to ‘Escape’ below and follow New Haunts on Bandcamp and Facebook for more updates.

Photo Credit: Katie Murt Photography

Kate Crudgington

LIVE: Kælan Mikla – Electrowerkz, London 19.02.19

Having been hand selected by The Cure’s Robert Smith to support Placebo at Southbank’s Meltdown Festival in the summer of 2018, it was no surprise to see Icelandic darkwave trio Kælan Mikla perform to a near capacity crowd at Electrowerkz on Wednesday night.

Presented by Bad Vibrations, the evening began with a performance from newcomer Some Ember (aka Dylan Travis). Clad in a silver shirt and metallic make-up, Travis shared his classic 808, Cold Cave-esque sounds with energy and enthusiasm, before Kælan Mikla took to the stage to deliver a set full of brooding electronic dissonance.

Together, Sólveig Matthildur (synths/keys), Laufey Soffía (vocals) and Margrét Rósa (bass) created a coven-esque atmosphere with their layered drum beats, pulverizing synths, powerful vocal delivery – and a burning stick of incense held by lead vocalist Laufey. A mix of spoken word, angsty screams and extended notes, Laufey’s voice echoed around the venue with poetic prowess. Singing in her native Icelandic tongue, the mood of each of Kælan Mikla’s songs translated clearly – whether listeners were fluent in the language or not.

Despite their darkwave roots, the trio’s live delivery had a gentle pop energy, aided by their animated movements and a colourful light show. Whilst their performance was still haunting and immersive, the chemistry between Matthildur, Soffía and Rósa clearly lightened the mood. After returning for a brief encore – Laufey with incense in hand again – the band left the stage to the sound of rapturous and appreciative applause. A bewitching, indulgent live experience: Kælan Mikla’s set is a beguiling blur of post-punk, gothic noise that ensnares the senses.

Follow Kælan Mikla on Facebook for more updates.

Kate Crudgington