PLAYLIST: October 2021

The GIHE team have unearthed more new music gems for you to listen to on our October Playlist! There’s an eclectic mix of indie anthems, gritty guitar tunes, alt-pop tracks & immersive electronic sounds. Take some time to scroll through our track choices below and make sure you hit play on the Spotify playlist at the end of this post.

Follow GIHE on Spotify to hear all of our previous playlists too.

Boy Harsher – ‘Tower’
It’s almost Halloween (aka Goth Christmas) so this shadowy electronic tune is a great way to kick off our October Playlist. Boy Harsher are fully leaning in to their cinematic tendencies on ‘Tower’ which is taken from their upcoming album The Runner. Set for release on 21st January, the record will be a “musical counterpart” to an accompanying short film written, produced & directed by the talented duo. (Kate Crudgington)

Brimheim – ‘poison fizzing on a tongue’
The recent single from Danish alt-pop artist Brimheim, ‘poison fizzing on a tongue’ oozes a glitchy, ethereal splendour. With its soaring, other-wordly allure, it reminds me of the dark majesty of Massive Attack, which is no bad thing! Brimheim releases her debut album Can’t Help Myself Into A Different Shape in January next year. (Mari Lane)

deep tan – ‘Tamu’s Yiffing Refuge’
Following the recent release of their stirring, and utterly unique EP creeping speedwells, East London trio deep tan return with a special one-off single, taken from the label Speedy Wunderground’s new compilation. As strangely kinky as the name would suggest, ‘tamu’s yiffing refuge’ is an explicit tale of furry hedonism. Maintaining all the immersive, seductive allure that we’ve come to know and love from the band, this latest offering oozes an added dark, psychedelic haze and frenzied post-punk drive reminiscent of the likes of legends The Slits. A truly mystical, compelling soundscape that’ll peculiarly entice you into its swirling, fur-filled cacophony. (ML)

New Pagans – ‘Find Fault With Me’
I am thrilled that Belfast’s New Pagans are BACK with this brilliant new single after the release of their debut album, The Seed, The Vessel, The Roots And All earlier this year. Vocalist Lyndsey McDougall says this track is about “checking in with each other and recognising when someone around you needs support.” (KC)

Death Valley Girls – ‘It’s All Really Kind Of Amazing’
A stand alone single from LA dystopian punk band Death Valley Girls, ‘It’s All Really Kind Of Amazing‘ offers a swift glimpse of positivity. As the raw, impassioned splendour of Bonnie Bloomgarden’s vocals soar throughout, it seems to be slightly less doom-laden in tone than previous offerings, but is no less stirring. Oozing a shimmering, trippy allure and swirling, vibrant energy reminiscent of The Kinks’ ‘Sunny Afternoon’, ‘it immerses the listener in its glistening euphoric haze, reminding us to relish those rare moments of beauty that can keep us going through challenging times. A mystically captivating retreat for the ears and mind. (ML)

Laura Lee & The Jettes – ‘Craigslist Boy’
I have drummer Eilis Frawley to thank for introducing me to this BANGER from German-based band Laura Lee & The Jettes. Eilis provides the beats for this playful anthem about vocalist Laura Lee’s experience of being pursued romantically by random men on the German version of eBay. Its relatability will make you laugh and eye roll in equal measure. Check out the accompanying video here. (KC)

Wet Leg – ‘Wet Dream’
Like everyone else with ears, I am OBSESSED with Isle of Wight duo Wet Leg. I caught them at their debut London show at Omeara last week and it was a JOY to listen to their infectious indie anthems. They also walked on stage to ‘Concerning Hobbits’ from The Lord Of The Rings soundtrack, which is an iconic move in itself. (KC)

Queen Cult – ‘Show & Tell’
The latest single from Cheshire band Queen Cult, ‘Show & Tell’ builds with a gritty, swirling energy to an empowered call to arms. I just can’t get enough of its relentless, searing force. (ML)

Nghtfall – ‘Evil Eye’
Following the heartfelt release of ‘I’ll Be Fine’ earlier this year, Toronto based non-binary artist Bradley Milosevic-Hill aka Nghtfall has recently shared ‘Evil Eye’. A sweeping slice of catchy anthemic pop, it oozes swirling feelings of anticipation and desire, creating a twinkling, emotion-strewn ballad. (ML)

girlhouse – ‘boundary issues’
I love this latest track from indie artist girlhouse, taken from her recent EP which is aptly titled, the second EP, quite simply lovely stuff. (Tash Walker)

HAVVK – ‘Halfway Out’
Taken from total faves HAVVK’s epic new album Levelling, stirring single ‘Halfway Out’ oozes an ethereal splendour as the haunting, celestial power of Julie’s vocals immerses the listener instantly. The whole album intertwines this captivating, twinkling majesty with a grunge-tinged grit throughout, and I can’t stop listening to it. I had the pleasure of chatting to front person Julie about the album and more last week – have a read of the interview here. (ML)

Sprints – ‘Modern Job’
I first heard Dublin’s Sprints on The Irish Jam radio show and I’m super grateful to them for the introduction. ‘Modern Job’, which is also the title track on the band’s upcoming EP (due on 11th March) is a scathing “critique of modern existence” and “an exploration of growing up queer” according to vocalist Karla Chubb. I can’t wait to hear the record in full. (KC)

Nova Twins – ‘Antagonist’
GIHE faves Nova Twins have shared this MASSIVE anthem about believing in yourself, full of their trademark lethal riffs and powerhouse vocals. (KC)

Tiger Mimic – ‘Silence Of The Night’
Propelled by an eerie energy, ‘Silence Of The Night’ reflects on the grim reality that women have to navigate on a daily basis. As the rich, sleek vocals of front woman Jess soar with a soulful power, it builds with a stirring tension to an impassioned statement of intent. A poignant call for justice and accountability at a time when we so desperately need it. You can catch the band live at The Victoria in Dalston on 9th December. (ML)

Sister Lucy – ‘Big Kid’
The second single from her upcoming EP Big Girl Pants, Sister Lucy aka Abi Sinclair’s single ‘Big Kid’ is a lush, grunge-tinged reflection on growth and womanhood. She’ll be playing a gig at The Shacklewell Arms on the 10th November to celebrate the EP’s release. (KC)

Elodie Gervaise – ‘Free Babe’
I am so into this song! All its mixed beats, intricate synths and electronics, it’s such a visually evocative track, you can just imagine the light show watching this being performed live. French-Australian artist, Elodie Gervaise’s new EP, Syzygy – which just feels oh so good to say – is out now. (TW)

Errunhrd – ‘Ruminate (Meditate)’
Niagra Falls based artist Errunhrd has penned this buoyant new track which shifts away from her previously more melancholic sounds. ‘Ruminate (Meditate)’ is taken from her debut album You Can Be You, I Can Be Me, which is set for release on 19th November. (KC)

Blonde Maze – ‘One House’
The latest single from New York artist Blonde Maze, ‘One House’ revolves around the comfort of finding a home in someone, especially after a long time of feeling misplaced. Oozing a blissful, soulful splendour, it flows with an utterly dreamy allure as Amanda’s soothing vocals ripple alongside twinkling electro hooks. Lately, as I’ve been going through a bit of a tough time, I’ve had this pretty much on a loop, and its sweeping euphoric energy helps to calm my mind instantly. Thank you Blonde Maze for another perfectly cathartic creation. And I’m SO excited that Blonde Maze’s debut album Something Familiar is set for release next week, 3rd November – haven’t looked forward to an album this much for a long time! (ML)

Mai – ‘Control’
An evocative electronic gem that urges listeners to surrender to the inevitability of change, I love Essex-based musician & vocalist Mai’s has debut single ‘Control’. Released via Cool Thing Records, the track is a collaboration between Mai aka Rosie Gulliver of Petty Phase, and songwriter and producer Liam Watkins from A Cause In Distress. (KC)

BISHI ft. Nikesh Shukla – ‘Language Is an Ocean’
Multi-instrumentalist and GIHE fave BISHI released her third album Let My Country Awake earlier this month, which this single is taken from. The record explores dual identities and urges listeners to lean into compassion and empathy in a chaotic and disconnected world. (KC)

Desire Marea – ‘You Think I’m Horny’ (Planningtorock’s ‘Planningtobehorny’ Version)
Tash & I are still on a high after seeing Planningtorock at Scala earlier this month, so when their remix of Desire Marea’s track ‘You Think I’m Horny’ dropped into my inbox I knew it was going straight on to our playlist! A great collaboration from two fantastic, unique artists. (KC)

AZADI.mp3 – ‘NAZAR’
I’ve been listening to the We Are Lady Parts playlist on Spotify recently and the algorithms led me to AZADI.mp3 – aka Juliette Motamed who plays drummer Ayesha in the hit Channel 4 show. She has a great set of electronic tunes that I’ve been listening to ever since. (KC)

Atna – ‘Smile’
“Why why why why why” …give me bizarre warped repetitive vocals from German avant-pop duo Atna ANY DAY. (TW)

Little Simz – ‘Speed’
Little Simz has done it again, latest album Sometimes I Might Be Introvert (in my case it’s always) is a total, immense masterpiece. ‘Speed’ is my favourite track on the album, in the same vein as previous faves ‘Boss’ and ‘Offence’, it’s propelled by a gritty, driving energy and Simz’s spot on lyricism, with a touch of orchestral grandeur. The perfect motivational anthem I’ve needed lately to get me through the day. (ML)

Kay Young ft. JNR WILLIAMS – ‘I’ve Got You’
‘I’ve Got You’ by London based artist, rapper and producer Kay Young featuring JNR Williams is such a feel good song! It’s taken from her EP This Here Feels Good, released via Play It Again Sam. (TW)

Duval Timothy ft. Lil Silva & Melanie Faye – ‘Fall Again’
I am totally obsessed and in love with this song. Rhythmic piano to start, before it slowly layers and builds with hazy, gentle vocals sweeping over the top. Such a dreamy sonic soundscape that feels so good in my ears. (TW)

Anna Vincent – ‘Naxos’
Having previously charmed us fronting indie-pop outfit Heavy Heart, and as a touring member of Happyness, after two decades making music London based Anna Vincent has now launched her first solo venture. With her debut album, Under The Glass (out today on Max Bloom of Yuck’s new label Ultimate Blends), she has recently been charming our ears with a number of shimmering singles, like the beautifully heartfelt ‘Naxos’. Exuding a spellbinding majestic grace alongside the stirring heartfelt emotion of Anna’s exquisite sparkling vocals, each track offers a truly blissful, captivating soundscape. (ML)

CMAT -‘No More Virgos’
Born from her desire to “marry her love of 80’s Italo disco with her hatred of Virgos,” Irish pop sensation CMAT’s playful new tune is a wry nod to her compulsive romantic decisions. “My mental health is banking on my chastity / and you’re bad for me” she jests over buoyant melodies, gently resisting the urge to circle back and repeat the same pattern of behaviour in her previous relationships. I’m so excited to hear CMAT’s debut album, If My Wife New I’d Be Dead, which is set for release via AWAL Recordings on 25th February 2022 (KC)

 

Track Of The Day: Death Valley Girls – ‘It’s All Really Kind Of Amazing’

Following scuzzy recent single ‘Sanitarium Blues’ and the re-release of their immense album Street Venom, LA ‘dystopian punk’ band (and GIHE faves) Death Valley Girls return with a surprisingly uplifting treat for our ears.

Stand alone single ‘It’s All Really Kind Of Amazing‘ offers a swift glimpse of positivity as twinkling, psychedelic keys chime alongside the gritty twang of guitar. As the raw, impassioned splendour of Bonnie Bloomgarden’s vocals soars throughout, it seems to be slightly less doom-laden in tone than previous offerings, but is no less stirring. Oozing a shimmering, trippy allure and swirling, vibrant energy reminiscent of The Kinks’ ‘Sunny Afternoon’, ‘It’s All Really Kind Of Amazing’ immerses the listener in its glistening euphoric haze, reminding us to relish those rare moments of beauty that can keep us going through challenging times. A truly majestic sonic escape from the frequent struggles of reality; a mystically captivating retreat for the ears and mind.

Of the track, Bloomgarden explains:

Being in a body, experiencing reality as a human, is endlessly challenging. There’s so much darkness, suffering, sorrow, and division, it’s hard to get past. Sometimes, and often for too long, I just stay in the darkness, forgetting there’s anything else. And then sometimes, my guides remind me to look around, sometimes, just look around, at this Earth, at its infinite beauty and intricacy, and simplicity, and sometimes I can feel it, that it’s all really kind of amazing.” 

‘It’s All Really Kind Of Amazing’ is accompanied by a beautifully hallucinogenic video, created by Bradley Hale. Have a watch now:

‘It’s All Really Kind Of Amazing’ is out now via Suicide Squeeze.

Mari Lane
@marimindles

Photo Credit: The Little Ghost/Kelsey Hart

PLAYLIST: July 2021

The GIHE team have unearthed some more new music gems for you to listen to on our July Playlist! There’s an eclectic mix of alternative tunes, synth-pop bangers and raucous guitar anthems for you to enjoy. Take some time to scroll through our track choices below and make sure you hit play on the Spotify playlist at the end of this post.

Follow GIHE on Spotify to hear all of our previous playlists too.

Amy Winehouse – ‘Me & Mr Jones’
“What kind of fuckery is this?” – one of my all time favourite lyrics, courtesy of Amy Winehouse. This month marked ten years since her untimely death and gave us all a chance to reflect on her iconic musical legacy. Charming, intelligent and rib-achingly funny, but simultaneously plagued by addiction, alcoholism and bulimia, Amy Winehouse’s altruistic talent is one that simply can’t be rivalled. RIP Amy. (Kate Crudgington)

Babeheaven – ‘Lovefool’ (The Cardigans Cover)
Babeheaven are a band who do wonders with their covers and this one is no exception. Singer Nancy Andersen’s voice just beautifully falls over the music every time, the perfect accompaniment to this sweltering summer where we just have to slow down. (Tash Walker)

Abra – ‘Roses’
This song has been spinning its way around all of my playlists over the last month. Released back in 2015, I always have space for a return listen for Abra. The way a song sounds six years later is part of the beauty of it, especially the lyrics on this one – “You taste best when you are in full bloom” – turn up your dials for a big slice of distilled electro pop. (TW)

Evil House Party – ‘Head Held High’
I love this captivating synth-pop tune from Copenhagen-based duo Evil House Party. Taken from their debut EP Grand Theft Audio, which is set for release on 24th September via Third Coming Records, the track is a heady, bittersweet reflection on personal uncertainty and laments the struggle of trying to survive in the real world whilst also trying to fulfil your dreams. (KC)

Maria Uzor – ‘Innocence’
The latest solo release of Maria Uzor (also one half of GIHE faves Sink Ya Teeth), ‘Innocence’ offers an other-worldly soundscape propelled by glitchy electronic hooks and drum ‘n’ bass reminiscent beats. Interweaving a whirring ethereal splendour with shades of the likes of Grimes with a unique soul-fused drive, I just can’t get enough of its blissful, euphoric energy and bewitching allure. Innocence And Worldliness, the upcoming EP from Maria Uzor, is set for release on 27th August. (Mari Lane)

John Glacier – ‘Icing’
This song! Coming in at 1.44 a song has never left me desperate for more, obsessed is an understatement. East London’s John Glacier released this as a teaser from the forthcoming 12-track project SHILOH: Lost For Words, due on 30th July. (TW)

Moor Mother ft. lojii – ‘Shekere’
Having released her debut album Fetish Bones back in 2016, musician-poet-artist-workshop facilitator Camae Ayewa – aka Moor Mother – has now announced her upcoming new album, Black Encyclopedia Of The Air. Taken from the album, latest single ‘Shekere’ features Philadelphia rapper lojii and is propelled by a stripped-back, jazz-infused musicality as it oozes a swirling, stirring allure and immersive, soulful drive. As poetically poignant lyricism is set against the captivating flow of the instrumentation, an exquisitely enthralling, and undeniably necessary, battle-cry is created. Black Encyclopedia Of The Air, the upcoming album from Moor Mother, is set for release on 17th September via ANTI-. (ML)

Witch Prophet – ‘Makda’
I have Tash to thank for introducing me to the majestic sounds of Ethio queer hip-hop fusion artist Witch Prophet. ‘Makda’ is a celebration of the Ethiopian Queen of Sheba and the accompanying video for the track is all about showcasing “the power of Black women and mothers.” (KC)

Piroshka – ‘V.O’
Taken from Piroshka’s brand new album, Love Drips and Gathers, ‘V.O’ offers a poignant tribute to 4AD’s late in-house art director and graphic designer Vaughan Oliver. A swirling, ethereal soundscape, sparkling with a captivating, shoegaze-tinged splendour, the track reflects not only on Miki Berenyi’s memories of Vaughan, but also her experience of attending his funeral last year – with many of the lyrics inspired by speeches that she heard on the day. Find out more about Piroshka and their new album in our recent interview with Miki here. (ML)

Praises – ‘A World On Fire’
This shadowy track by Toronto-based Praises is such a hypnotising listen. The new project of Jesse Crowe (formerly one-half of Beliefs), ‘A World On Fire’ “imagines a diaspora and a war, whilst tackling other ideas of mortality, identity and love.” The track is taken from Praises’ upcoming EP, EP4, which is set for release on 5th August via Hand Drawn Dracula. (KC)

Tirzah – ‘Tectonic’
Anyone who knows me/has asked me what I’m listening to over the last couple of years will have given you one answer: TIRZAH. She’s recently announced the release of her new album Colourgrade which I am counting down the days to. This song ‘Tectonic’ is totally hypnotic, starting with a conflicting drone before her vocals arrive, rougher than we’re used to, all adding to the music’s intensity – and don’t even get me started on the lyrics. Needless to say, this track gives me FEELS. (TW)

Täpp – ‘Aquaria’
The latest release from Jazztronica/hip hop/ classical collective Täpp, led by classically trained jazz violinist Rebekah Reid. This track is lifted from their debut album, named after the winner of Season 10 of RuPaul’s Drag Race – ‘Aquaria’ is an anthem created to empower women, transgender/gender non-conforming people and the LGBTQ+ community, encouraging them to step into their light and “shine like the gifts they are to the world.” Can’t argue with that. (TW)

Tiiva – ‘Bones’
Is it even a GIHE playlist if I don’t include a Tiiva track? I’m a big fan of all their releases so far and ‘Bones’ is no exception. The London-based producer has crafted another captivating soundscape full of atmospheric beats, hushed vocals and summery synth sounds. (KC)

Planningtorock – ‘Gay Dreams Come True’
This song gives nothing but pure gay joy, a pleasure to hear it pouring out of any speakers. Planningtorock has to be the most consistent creator of absolute dance tunes right now. I LOVE IT. What vibes, what fun. (TW)

cheeky – ‘SPADES’
cheeky is a classically trained pianist, queer non-binary producer based in Philadelphia. This track ‘SPADES’ is taken from their recent EP The Tower. Constructed of mostly percussive sounds sampled from their piano, cheeky says this song is “about struggling with self love.” Definitely check out their new EP, it’s a bittersweet exploration of their musical influences and includes a bewitching cover of ‘Nightingale’ from Disney’s Cinderella. (KC)

FLOSSING – ‘SWITCH’
FLOSSING is the new project from Heather Elle, formerly of Bodega and The Wants. I love her candid, moody sound on her debut single ‘SWITCH’, which explores her own sexuality and “the deviant nature of men.” I can’t wait to hear her new EP Queen Of The Mall, which is set for release on 10th September. (KC)

Ailsa Tully – ‘Sheets’
Ahead of the release of a new EP next month, Welsh artist Ailsa Tully recently shared poignant single ‘Sheets’. Flowing with a shimmering, stripped back musicality, ‘Sheets’ combines lilting melodies with Tully’s crystalline, honey-sweet vocals. Oozing an immersive, delicate emotion and sparkling grace, there is something uniquely captivating about the juxtaposition of the vocals and the rippling instrumentation; the gentle build up and crescendo evoking images of waves delicately crashing against swathes of sand. Holy Isle, the upcoming EP from Ailsa Tully, is set for release 20th August via Dalliance Recordings. (ML)

CMAT – ‘2 Wrecked 2 Care’
Irish pop sensation CMAT says this song is based around the idea of what “would have happened if Sheryl Crow ever had to work in a TK Maxx” – absolute lols. I love everything CMAT creates and I can’t wait to see her live for the first time at her sold out show at The Troubadour in November. (KC)

Bad Waitress – ‘Strawberry Milkshake’
The latest single from Toronto based Bad Waitress, ‘Strawberry Milkshake’ blasts into the ears with pulsating hooks and thrashing beats, as Kali-Ann Butala’s seething vocals soar with a riotous power. Propelled by a gritty energy and frenzied, empowering drive, it’s a wonderfully sinister – hell-raisingly raucous yet fuzzily catchy – punk-fuelled anthem. Of the track, the band comment: “Strawberry Milkshake’ is saccharine sweet, milky pink terror. On the surface it’s sexy and enticing – but there’s a poisonous sludge bubbling just beneath.” No Taste, the debut album from Bad Waitress, is set for release on 3rd September. (ML)

Pretty Happy – ‘Sudocream’
Centered around the Cork-centric story of a girl who is suffering from alcohol poisoning in the Mercy Hospital whilst her partner sits across the road in the Franciscan Well pub, Pretty Happy’s ‘Sudocream’ kicks and screams with the kind of frustration, panic and anxiety that can’t be soothed by the childhood medicinal staple it’s named after. It’s a frantic, witty, cathartic burst of art punk noise from the Cork trio, lifted from their recent EP Sluggers Bridge, released via Art For Blind Records. (KC)

My Idea – ‘Stay Away Still’
The latest single from New York duo Nate Amos and Lily Konigsberg – aka My Idea – ‘Stay Away Still’ is a perfectly jangly slice of lo-fi, indie-pop. I’m a big fan of this track’s luscious, sunny melodies and the way it juxtaposes a deadpan wit with a dreamy, twinkling energy. ‘Stay Away Still’ has been released with accompanying single ‘That’s My Idea’ ahead of the duo’s debut EP, set for release on 30th July. (ML)

Softcult – ‘Spit It Out’
I’m a big fan of this lush, swirling guitar tune from Canadian duo Softcult. Formed of Ontario-based twins Phoenix and Mercedes Arn Horn, this new single gently encourages listeners to face up to, and reject their unconscious bias. Check out the accompanying video for it here. (KC)

Meggie Brown – ‘Dusty Smells’
The first song to be taken from London-based Meggie Brown’s upcoming new EP, ‘Dusty Smells’ is a nostalgia-inducing anthem for anyone struggling with their identity. With shades of the likes of Aussie fave Courtney Barnett, it juxtaposes Brown’s deadpan-yet-poetic reflections with a sparkling musicality as scuzzy hooks flow with a lilting energy, offering an uplifting glimmer of hope. Of the track, Brown – who has recently come out as transgender – explains: “Coming to terms with one’s gender identity has been both beautiful and challenging during this lockdown. When I wrote and recorded ‘Dusty Smells’ I wanted it to match through sound how non-binary those emotions and realisations were.” HOME, the upcoming EP from Meggie Brown, is set for release later this year. (ML)

th’sheridans – ‘Awesome Summers & Kate’
The latest single from indie-pop duo th’sheridans, ‘Awesome Summers & Kate’ is taken from their upcoming career-spanning compilation. Propelled by scuzzy hooks, jangly drum-machine induced beats and a swirling, danceable energy, it reflects on the tentative anticipation of possibilities as restrictions start to lift. With shades of the stripped-back hype-pop/dance-punk of Le Tigre, it offers a perfect smattering of effervescent euphoria – something that is much needed in these uncertain times. Pieces Of General, the upcoming compilation album from th’sheridans, is set for release on 10th September via Reckless Yes. (ML)

Death Valley Girls – ‘Sanitarium Blues’
A refreshingly honest reflection on mental health struggles, Death Valley Girls’ latest single ‘Sanitarium Blues’ was inspired by vocalist Bonnie Bloomgarden’s stay at a professional institution amidst a serious battle with her own mental health. Propelled by the soaring, gritty power of Bloomgarden’s vocals, it’ll soak you in its fierce, reverb-strewn riffs that rage with a frenzied, angsty drive. Oozing a sludgey, grunge-fuelled fuzz with a swirling psychedelic allure, it’s an instantly bewitching and eerily immersive creation. Street Venom, the re-issued album, is set for release on 30th July via Suicide Squeeze Records. (ML)

Ms White – ‘Fuck Men’
I’m ashamed to say that I hadn’t heard of Ms White until recently, when Belfast artist F.R.U.I.T.Y thankfully introduced me to her by including this track in their recent Five Favourites feature for us. A wonderfully empowering anthem from the Trans artist, the name really speaks for itself: I challenge you to listen to this and not feel motivated and ready to face the world. (ML)

WATCH: Death Valley Girls – ‘Sanitarium Blues’

Death Valley Girls’ new video for ‘Sanitarium Blues’ is taken from the LA band’s soon-to-be re-issued debut album Street Venom and provides the perfect psychedelic back-drop to the dystopian doom-rockers’ take on honest suffering. The track flew onto paper following vocalist Bonnie Bloomgarden’s stay at a professional institution amidst a serious battle with her mental health. The revival of this track as an uplifting and life-affirming reminder that there will be better days could not be better timed.

The release of a new video for this single serves as the perfect throwback to the LA-based group’s most authentic and direct work. The new video, directed by Wiktor Lekston, captures the band’s intention to depict a mental episode as an out-of-body experience through a mixture of surreal and hallucinogenic inspirations. This is produced through a series of repeated fuzzy holographic images created in analog and intensified by the feedback signals. You can’t quite put your finger on what it is you’re looking at – everything from skeletons and non-lifelike faces, through to what appears to be memories merged with dreams, have been compared by Lektston to the “POST-MTV’s clips from the ’80s.” The band’s aim to visually capture an astral projection, without necessarily directly conveying that to the audience, is a huge success.

Scuzzy guitars from Bloomgarden and guitarist Larry Schemel, married with a transcendent use of reverb and delay as the chords ring out throughout the verse, provokes an apocalyptic and lucid-dream state in the mind of the listener. We’re then thrown into a starkly contrasting chorus filled with propelling riffs and a deliberately sinister beat from Patty Schemel on the kit that confines us; it’s claustrophobic, lonely and the perfect sonic portrayal of how isolating a mental illness can truly be. BUT it’s not all gloom from the doom-punk outfit, as there is hope and reassurance in this track’s honesty and also in Bloomgarden’s message ahead of the re-issue:

Life is hard, but you are not meant to suffer… There are lots of places to get help. It just seems hard to find sometimesRealising that you are not meant to suffer (no one is!) and seeking help is so huge. Do it ‘cause you deserve it! A healthy you can change the world! And the world deserves your healthiest you, too.”

Street Venom, the re-issue, is set for release on 30th July and will consist of a deluxe edition of the album available both digitally and on vinyl, courtesy of Suicide Squeeze Records. Pre-order here.

Lauren Roberts
@robauren

Photo Credit: Mara Breene