VIDEO PREMIERE: The Pearl Harts – ‘Suck It Up’ (Live At Anchorbaby Studios)

A classic rock and roll anthem full of pounding drums, commanding vocals and raucous guitar licks, London-based duo The Pearl Harts have shared an exclusive live video of their track ‘Suck It Up’. Recorded in the summer of 2020 and filmed at Anchor Baby Studios in Kent, the band teamed up with producer Dan Lucas and videographer Sean Hardy to make the slick new visuals, which reflect the power and charisma of the duo’s live performance.

The Pearl Harts – like many bands – were hit hard when the covid-19 pandemic put a stop to touring in March 2020. The duo used their time in the subsequent lockdowns to remotely write & record material for a new album, and once restrictions were lifted they began performing a series of socially distanced gigs, including a drive-in show with VC London, the UK’s only all-female motorcycle crew.

Now, the pair are busy preparing for an interactive online gig with Blacksanta at The Fiddlers Elbow on Thursday 20th May. Whilst audiences are still not permitted inside, they’ll be able to experience the band’s set live from their own home, with the ability to be seen and heard by them in the venue. Fans can also join friends in groups, video chat in the virtual bar and continue to text chat whilst the performance unfolds. Tickets are available here.

Watch the video for ‘Suck It Up’ below for a taste of what to expect from The Pearl Harts on the night.

Follow The Pearl Harts on bandcampSpotifyTwitterInstagram & Facebook

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut

Track Of The Day: Body Breaks – ‘Eyes To Brightness’

A jagged, hazy art-punk tune that meanders through the restless thoughts we have when we’re attempting to sleep, Canadian duo Body Breaks have shared their latest single ‘Eyes To Brightness’. Taken from their upcoming album Bad Trouble (We Are Time), which is set for release on 18th June, the track chronicles band member Julie Reich’s lifelong struggle with insomnia.

Formed of Reich and Matt LeGroulx, Body Breaks create sounds inspired by the likes of Pavement, Velvet Underground and Sonic Youth. Fuelled by a strong DIY & experimental ethos, LeGroulx played with Balinese gamelan guitar scales to form his distinctive riffs on their debut album, whilst Reich mined her own personal experiences to form the lyrics. New single ‘Eyes To Brightness’ is a cohesive culmination of these efforts, with it’s striking vocals and off-kilter guitar twangs.

“I’ve always hated sleep ever since I was a little. It means the day is over, and I’ve never wanted that to happen,” Reich explains about the context of the track. “This was the first song I recorded vocals for on the album. It’s different from all of the others in terms of the recording process and how I approached it. After this I decided on an identity for the person writing these songs, even though it’s all me. The video is a 3D animation that I made mainly using SketchUp. I like to create worlds, so this was a fun exploration.”

Watch the video for ‘Eyes To Brightness’ below.

Follow Body Breaks on bandcampTwitter & Instagram

Photo Credit: Natalie Logan

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut

LISTEN: Alice Mary – ‘Too Much’

Alice Mary is an indie-pop musician living in East London who makes music combining a mixture of electronics, guitar, and introspective lyrics. Following 2017’s I Am Here EP and charming us live at The Amersham Arms a few years back, she has now shared new single ‘Too Much’. A tight pop production with Prince-inspired synths and guitars, it fuses together pulsing samples and angular vocal melodies. With additional production and drums from Alex Walker and a pumping bass line from George Kerridge, it’s upbeat, playful music with a darker subtext.
 
Infectious and full of energy, it begins with the excitement of a new relationship, which we hear in the ’80s–style sampling and the funky guitar sound (reminiscent of a Prince classic), yet the vulnerability starts to come through in the second verse (“I’m an island of unrest…”). The contrast in the chorus between “too much of a good thing” and “you’ll never be enough” perfectly sums up the song’s themes of sex and anxiety. Like all good pop songs, it is relatable, capturing the nerves and expectations of being intimate with someone new, all in a succinct rush.

We’re off to a good start with this song, the first of four singles to be released this year from Alice. We can’t wait to hear more of her heartfelt, shimmering sounds.

‘Too Much’ is out now. Keep your eyes peeled for a brand new live video, set for release on 24th May.

Fi Ni Aicead
@gotnomoniker

EP: Joely Smith – ‘that’s when gd neighbours become gd friends’

thats when gd neighbours become gd friends, the wonderfully titled EP of demos from Joely Smith (usually found playing with London-based indie/pop-punk band adults) seems to have arrived almost by accident. For Smith, the process of recording these demos allowed her to let go of a group of songs which she didn’t feel necessarily fit with the sound of her band and declare them “finished”. For us listeners, Smith’s need to record is a gift – this EP is beautiful.

This might not be a universal experience, but there’s something deeply nostalgic about listening to demos – at least there is for anyone who spent their teenage years trawling through social media/pre-social media fan boards/whatever came before that (tapes passed round the playground?! Delete according to generation) for any sign of ‘lost’ recordings from their favourite bands; scratchy demos of songs which existed in far more polished and famous versions elsewhere. The act of listening to something half-formed, a glimpse into the process of writing your favourite songs, has a magical quality all of its own. That’s not to say that any of the songs in this EP sound unfinished or half-formed – quite the opposite is true – but that the aural aesthetic of demos carries an inherent warmth and charm. When that aesthetic is married to the down-played charisma of song-writing like Smith’s, the end results are rather magnetic.

Though the music here differs distinctly from adults, the same sense of humour and warmth runs through both projects. The EP opens with ‘Womankind’, a lofi hug of a tune. A fuzzy guitar and voice are joined, after the introduction, by bass, drums and a second guitar line (all played by Smith) and the whole thing comes together in a manner reminiscent of Graham Coxon’s solo work – a punk sound distilled through a warm and unassuming persona; the edges taken off, aggression stripped out, but the heart remaining very much in place.

Smith has explained the EP as consisting of songs which “didn’t fit within the adults sound“, and the evidence of that is in the eclecticism on show here. ‘Notice’ is filled out with a lengthy synth-led instrumental passage in the middle (which is not nearly as ‘prog’ as that description makes it sound), and there’s shades of ‘80s alternative bands like Beat Happening to songs like ‘Pale’ and ‘Light’. There’s something distinctly ‘90s about the EP as a whole, though – the guitar fuzz and mellow vocal delivery recall Pavement, the song ‘Light’ earns comparison to some of Pixies’ more melodic and less frantic work (‘Hear Comes Your Mind’ comes to … err … mind), and the melodic sensibility of Brit-pop bands like Elastica and Blur (the latter in their less pop moments) is present throughout. 

Smith has declared no intention whatsoever to perform these songs live, and no ambition to work further on solo material once she’s able to resume playing regularly with adults. So, we’ll have to be grateful for what we’ve got: a six track EP which manages to be both ambitious and lo-fi, varied but cohesive in sound, funny and sad (sometimes simultaneously). 

Listen to that’s when gd neighbours become gd friends on bandcamp now:

Gregory Metcalfe
@GregorysParty