Track Of The Day: The C33s – ‘Benzodiac’

Named “the future” by BBC 6Music’s Chris Hawkins, The C33s are back and leave no listener’s head unturned in their latest surf-rock plea to tackle life’s harsh realities riff-first. It’s been a long roadmap, two lockdowns and one cancelled Christmas since last year’s single ‘Harpurhey Hostility‘ took a political dive into Mancunian society’s most disenfranchised, but The C33s are back with new track ‘Benzodiac’ – the newest addition to their bible of uncompromising home-truths.  

‘Benzodiac’ is the first single and the title track from the 3-piece punk outfit’s new EP and was fuelled by the band’s frustration at the closure of the live gig scene last year. For that reason, it’s production clings as close as possible to the raw live experience, taking the Californian genre to dizzy new heights before slamming you back down to a gritty-garage reality that the band have best described as “concrete surf-rock”. 

The single is explained by the band as “a frank observation of addiction, renewal and rebirth”, but prepare to be anything but sedated as an intoxicatingly slick and progressive guitar riff provided by Cav Green pulls you in, making it the perfect soundtrack for your favourite desert cult-classic film. We are thrown into epic surroundings with urgency as this track builds with Judy Jones storming in raucously on the kit whilst Ste Phillips fuels the anticipation with an exhilarating and palpitating bass line, meeting the perfect use of a tantalising reverb and echo-inducing delay during Cav’s guitar solo.

What’s exciting about this track is Cav’s move to a more spoken-word style vocal like that of The Damned’s 1977 release Damned Damned Damned, while the delivery of lyrics like “the universal will just to become” resemble the more recently fashioned passionate and punchy vocal of Idles’ frontman Joe Talbot. Not to forget Judy’s rousing dual harmonies throughout and her first-class punk yelp that creates the ideal sought after abrupt cliff-hanger ending to this single that paves the way for a future that is The C33s.

The new from The C33s, also entitled Benzodiac, is set for release in August on Rare Vitamin Records, and will available to purchase on 10” vinyl, CD and cassette.

Lauren Roberts
@robauren

Introducing Interview: The Deep Blue

Releasing their debut single, ‘The Jealous Sea’, today, Manchester-based band The Deep Blue create wonderfully uplifting, shimmering offerings. Flowing with glistening harmonies, the new single showcases Georgia, Sophie, Niamh and Katie’s beautifully rich vocals and an endearing heartfelt sentiment, reminiscent of the likes of HAIM or The Staves.

Despite only forming last year, The Deep Blue have already secured bookings at festivals such as Liverpool Sound City and Focus Wales, immediately cementing themselves as firm ones to watch. We caught up with the band to find out more…

Hi The Deep Blue, welcome to Get In Her Ears! Can you tell us a bit about yourselves?
Hello! Thanks for having us. We are an all-female indie-folk band based in Manchester. This city has a special place in our hearts but our homes are far and wide; Georgia is from Scotland, Sophie from Wales, Niamh from Ireland and Katie from Down South (official term). We spend our weekends blending weird and wonderful vocal harmonies with Sophie’s punchy beats and Georgia’s catchy guitar lines. If we’re lucky, Sophie cooks us dinner after rehearsal (her cooking is out of this world). ‘Jealous Sea’ is the debut single from The Deep Blue, released under Liverpool-based indie label Snide Records. It was produced by the talented Alex Quinn.

How did you initially decide to start creating music together?
Niamh, Sophie and I used to be in another band named Café Spice but in 2020 we began making new tracks that didn’t fit with our old sound, so we decided to start something new. Katie joined us in the summer lockdown 2020 and The Deep Blue was born. It’s been so joyful painting on a fresh musical canvas with this wonderful group of women! A key component of our music is three-part harmonies and with Katie’s voice, the mix was luscious. Silky, warm and velvety. 

You’re about to release your debut single ‘Jealous Sea’. What inspired this track? Are there any particular themes running throughout it?  
The never-ending onslaught of airbrushed social media has been giving us all motion sickness these past few years. It’s both spectacular and terrifying, but we can’t deny that it often leaves us feeling a little green with jealousy. We wanted to capture that in an honest, hair-down, mask-off song. We reached for a gritty rawness and paired it with our soft folky singing and out popped ‘Jealous Sea’. 

We love your uplifting, shimmering sound, which brings to mind the beautiful alt-folk of The Staves, but who would you say are your main musical influences?
What a compliment! Thank you. It’s a tricky one. For this song in particular we listened to a lot of Phoebe Bridgers and ‘Emily’ by Clean Cut Kid. HAIM’s album Women in Music Part II had just come out and we all became obsessed with it. We played it in the car all the way to Giant Wafer Studios in Wales (where we recorded ‘Jealous Sea’). We have a good mix of favourites among us. Everything from Arlo Parks to Jessie Ware, Big Thief to Katy Kirby. We love it all! 

You’re from Manchester – in ‘normal’ times, one of the best places for live music! What have been some of the best gigs you’ve ever been to?
Well, obviously it attracts some big names. Some of our top gigs include Maggie Rogers at the Ritz, Parcels at The Academy, Everything Everything at the 02 Apollo, Honeyfeet at Niamos – all mind-blowing. Some of the best live acts we’ve seen are the more local ones. Rocking up to Matt and Phred’s or The Whiskey Jar on a Tuesday night, you’re bound to hear something brilliant. Those music nights are intimate and special. Manchester’s local musicians are unbelievably talented.

And what can fans expect from your live shows? 
Our gigs are quite intimate even with a lot of people in the room – we like it that way. We want people to feel things and we also want people to dance. Dance their feelings – there’s time for stories, but also time to just move to the music and have a wee boogie! Expect vocal lusciousness, catchy guitar riffs and four-to-the-floor grooving; expect to laugh and maybe cry; expect to be lost and then found again, and then, by the end, expect to be our new friend and have tired feet.

How have you been connecting with your audience and other musicians during the pandemic?
I’d love to say we’ve been writing our fans letters and serenading people on their door steps but the fact of it is, we’ve been doing the usual social media dance. We’ve had fun covering some of our favourite female artists – Sorcha Richardson, Aurora, Caroline Polachek. I guess we’ve mostly been focusing on ourselves, building The Deep Blue and writing songs.

And has there been anything/anyone specific that has been inspiring you, or helping to motivate you, throughout these strange times? 
We all have sisters and I feel like we’ve become a surrogate sisterhood in replacement of our absent sisters. Having each other has been hugely supportive, I can’t even find words. The Deep Blue has been our family when we couldn’t go home.  Now for the serious stuff: Sophie’s cooking, HAIM, chocolate digestives, Niamh’s poetry phase, the thought of releasing this song.

How do you feel the music industry is for new bands at the moment – would you say it’s difficult to get noticed?
Yes, it certainly is hard to get noticed but I think if you’re out there just to “get noticed” there are far easier routes to success than being a musician. It’s tricky not to stray from your path of passion and we’ve all had bizarre ideas like “Oh maybe if we just start a cooking channel on TikTok where we sing and toss pancakes we’ll double our fan base in 30 seconds”. Making the music we love is the most important thing and that keeps us grounded. It’s difficult to be heard, there are so many new bands and artists all the time. It takes a hell of a lot of organisation and hard work to even get one song written, rehearsed, recorded and released. There are seven of us in this team working to make it work! But it started with one and grew over time. My advice to new acts would be: take your time, figure out who you are and what your sound is and let that be the centre of your universe. 

As we’re a new music focused site, are there any other upcoming bands that you’d recommend we check out?
Yes! Morgan Harper Jones, Nina Cobham, Quiet Houses, MYTBE.

Finally, what does the rest of 2021 have in store for The Deep Blue?
Write, record, release and finally play some live shows! We cannot wait to perform, we’ve got so many songs we want to share with the world. We’ve been working hard in the studio so keep your eyes peeled and your ears tuned.

Massive thanks to The Deep Blue for answering our questions!

Produced by Alex Quinn and recorded in Giant Wafer Studios in Wales, ‘The Jealous Sea’ is out today, 13th May, via Snide Records.

Track Of The Day: Gary, Indiana – ‘Nike Of Samothrace’

Following previous singles ‘Berlin’ and ‘Pashto’, Manchester-based Gary, Indiana have now signed to Fire Talk Records and shared a brand new single.

Propelled by thrashing beats and scuzzy, distorted hooks alongside the visceral spoken-word vocals of Valentine Caulfield, ‘Nike Of Samothrace’ builds with eerily disconcerting undertones to a playfully innovative post-punk soundscape. A wondrous, whirring cacophony, it’s the perfect ode to the chaotic emotions swirling around our heads this year: an intense, cathartic sonic experience. Of the track, the band explain:

“We wanted ‘Nike of Samothrace’ to be like a blunt instrument, both lyrically and musically. It’s purely brute force, gouging away with all dials turned up full, including the gutteral bass line, which was inspired by Thomas Bangalter’s score for Irreversible and Hans Zimmer’s score for Blade Runner 2049. We’re very much driven by rhythm and movement and also wanted to experiment with a Liquid Liquid style percussive breakdown, we love when genres and dynamics are smashed together in an untidy way… we love to butcher things.” 

Directed by Will Shields, watch the immersive new video for ‘Nike Of Samothrace’ here:

‘Nike Of Samothrace’ is out now via Fire Talk Records.

Mari Lane
@marimindles

Photo Credit: Will Shields

Track Of The Day: LIINES – ‘Sorry’

Having received acclaim from the likes of Sleaford Mods, John Kennedy and BBC 6Music’s Steve Lamacq, as well as blowing us away headlining for us at The Finsbury, Manchester trio LIINES consistently impress with their distinctive, raw post-punk. And latest single ‘Sorry’ is no exception.

Oozing the band’s trademark dark, brooding power, ‘Sorry’ builds with deep, intense bass lines, the gritty, commanding growl of vocalist Zoe McVeigh and Leila O’Sullivan’s consistent pummelling beats. Propelled by a thrashing sense of urgency, an eerie swirling majesty encompasses the listener, captivating the ears with its punk-fuelled bewitching allure.

Of the track McVeigh explains:

“… it’s about whether somebody is present or absent, you’re trying to make someone feel sorry for you, but as the song speeds up it becomes a bit more of a manic notion and sort of bordering on obsessive. LIINES songs are more of a mental state than a specific event – they are an emotion, a feeling.

 

Produced by Paul Tipler (Elastica, Placebo), ‘Sorry’ is out now (with B side ‘On and On’), with a limited number of black 7” vinyl editions available for direct mail order and through independent record shops, via Reckless Yes. Order via LIINES’ Bandcamp now. 

 

Mari Lane
@marimindles