In My Daydreams.
Their name is taken from a track by the Shangra-Las; their sound infused with U.S. elements of garage-rock: an effect that is hard to shake off.
In My Daydreams is available at:
GARAGE-rock and heavier, yet controlled sounds are not often…
heard at the moment. Band that are new to the market, and make their first tentative steps into unsure waters, face an inherent gamble. Depending on the year, often depends on what the public wants. Trends and demands, fickle as they are, have an infantile lack of concentration. Over the last several years there has been a shift in popularity; from The xx-style other-worldliness, through to of-the-moment fascinations such as Daft Punk, Vampire Weekend and Emile Sande. Little consistency, pattern or structure seems to dictate minds and demands. It has been a worrying trend over the last few years: something that looks set to continue too. When the likes of Britpop and indie were in vogue, you could always rely on the fact that, at least for the new few years, the public would be clasping and seeking out this type of music. There was some mobility in the market for new bands, but by and large, trends tending to control output. I guess it is good to an extent that there is more diversity and less dependence on fitting into a mould. However, new acts have a tougher time ahead of them. The public, unfortunately, are still as inexplicably unpredictable when it comes to consistency of opinion; popularity and credibility often hinges as much on striking the right chord at the right time, or else being so unique or different, that a sheer curiosity is the focal mandate. In 2013, it is harder now than ever, to determine what is going to be required , from the public’s view. A host of variable and colourful acts are bursting forth, nestling into the marketplace, and vying for admiration and notice. If one were to say what is required most of all in the current climate, I would say heavier blues sounds; or else garage rock sounds with a kick of the U.S., and its heart in the U.K. Too many bands now are bogged down in indie sounds and The XX-esque navel-gazing mystique. Sure, there is a great deal of interest when it comes to the compositions, but with regards to the atmosphere, vocals and lyrics, there is little diversity, intrigue or potency at all. We hear too much sedateness, a lot of so-so guitar noise, and a world of indistinguishably. It is true that, if you dig hard enough, you can hear music that will capture you- but you have to look far too hard for comfort. Modern music is still being made memorable but existing acts. The biggest and most profitable acts of this year will be established acts. As well as Daft Punk and Vampire Weekend, the likes of Laura Marling, Queens of the Stone Age and The National will be making the ‘top 10’ lists, come the end of the year. I have witnessed few examples of bands whom can ever challenge the established order, and make viable steps towards a coup. Solo artists suffer a similar issue. There has been a few that are a bit different; but so many are so similar: bogged down in unspectacular acoustic scenes, proffered by a voice that is either vastly unoriginal, or else mind-numbing. When hunting through the media, and keeping your ears close to the ground, where do you situate yourself, when hoping to find something that is outside of the norm., and capable of eliciting fascination and excitement?
Hopes were high, and my senses inflamed, when I discovered Love L.U.V. All the ingredients were in place: the classic four-piece formation with male and female blends; gorgeous and striking girls, with cool and suave boys; a curious biography and ambition, as well as a sound that I have not heard a lot recently. Lucy Doyle is the vocal queen; Tommy Atkins the guitar warrior; Steve Quigley the drum lord, with Jessica Turner playing keys pioneer. With a unique and intriguing band name, and a distinct band uniform and uniformity: a lot of black-and-white photography, alongside black clothing. Cards are kept close to chest, and the social media sites that they are on, give little insight into their influence and individual biographies. You are required to write your own assumptions and arrive at conclusions based on the strength of their music. It is a tact and requisite that many new acts have taken. Having only formed last Summer, the band only made their live debut three months ago. The fledgling steps have been positive and celebrated: more dates beckon, and a steady reputation has been built. Limehouse, east London, and ‘The Disco Room’ was the location the band used to record In My Daydreams- as well as the associative video. I am always fascinated by the initial months of any new act’s career. Even if they have a manager or record label on board to begin, a lot of their personality, development and consciousness is developed by them alone. They are orphaned or un-adopted children, left to fend for themselves in the music world, with all its heady sounds and smells and barbed wire. Many struggle with the pressure and independence, whilst others thrive and turn it to their advantage. Love L.U.V. have a bold confidence and convincing ambition, which to my mind, indicates a smooth and prosperous road. Certainly based on the strength of their single, they should have no anxiety or apprehensions…
In My Daydreams has a cool and seductive electric guitar strum. Sounding like something between The Everly Brothers’ All I Have To Do Is Dream-cum-debut album The Beatles (Do You Want to Know a Secret/A Taste of Honey), it is a smooth and pleasingly evocative initial introduction. As a light percussive tap arrives, with cymbal emphasis, a guitar riot is unleashed. It has the blues/garage rock sound of Seven Nation Army, as well being reminiscent of a less aggressive Arbeit Macht Frei (off of The Libertines’ eponymous album). It seems like a witch’s brew of the two, with a rollicking kick of something quite intoxicating. It will have your head swaying, feet tapping, and with evocative edges, and a fresh spark of 2013 London garage rock, it is invigorating and intent. It is hard to shake off the Seven Nation Army comparisons. It never brings to mind any sort of reappropriation. It is fresher; less twangy and hard-hitting: it is more inclusive and melodic, with more percussive influence, and less tortured drama. In a way it the perfect introduction, as it is short and sharp, and will certainly be in your brain for a long, long time. In the way that Detroit and London are introduced, given alcohol, a quiet room, and a packet of cigarettes; the resulting progeny is wide-smiling, relaxed and filled with ethanol tangs and serotonin release. The track concerns an unnamed beau being our heroine’s “star-crossed lover”. There is a romantic coquettishness, as well as an impassioned power to Lucy’s tones: honeyed, but born with a tough fists. Jessica provides ample and effective supportive vocals, adding an extra layer of emphasis and authority to the words. Tommy and Steve work wonderfully together, unveiling a twirling and psychotropic twist of blues, rock, that mixes ’60s and ’70s sides, with ’90s recollections, that are both soldered to a modern-day steel template. The vocal is something that struck my ear hard. Ordinarily, and being a self-proclaimed (and regrettable) master/anal retentive when it comes to vocals and their lineage and heritage; I was stumped. Lucy has few of the pitfalls of most singers: I could not instantly recall a comparable voice, or hint at an obvious influence. There are minute shades of Cyndi Lauper; tiny punk edges, with some early-Madonna as well: not that it is either obvious or overly-apparent or predominant. These vocals are given time to pervade and strike up front: unencumbered by too much sonic inference, yet are punctured beautifully by a rabble of rumbling keys, drums and guitar. The motif of daydreams, and scenes “In my visions”, tell of our protagonist proclaiming and exulting the benefits and wonders of an anonymous subject. Whether the man in question is a lover, former or present, or a friend, there is always a positive regard elicited. Comparisons with The Kills have been levied at Love L.U.V. and I suppose there is a similar bait and switch with the vocal and music; as well as a cinematic stomp in the sound and lyrics. Romantic dispositions and charmed proclamations give the track a positive energy and pop sensibility, that, when combined with the rush and blood-rush of the audio energy, produces something natural and cohesive, as well as surprising and unexpected. Our protagonist says that, in daydreams, she is not (just) “this little girl”: she wants to be taken “to the stars”. The coda and theme of ‘stars’ is emphasised, repeated and ramified. Its simplicity and effectiveness is infectious and gains a momentum and gravity, that lasts for probably a third of the track, with precious little lyrical or vocal diversion.
Love L.U.V have stepped forward with big results. In a year where there is a heavy reliance on softer sounds, or rock force with little melody, the group are pulling together forgotten threads from stronger times. The vocals are original and fresh, yet have some ’60s charm along the lines of The Shagri-Las and The Ronettes. The keys, guitar and drums have garage rock elements from the ’90s and early-’00s, yet have an urgency that is very much as modern as anything out there. It is early in the game to say what the future holds, with regards to the direction their music will go. If they can keep producing more songs like In My Daydreams, then they will be in the public consciousness for a long time. One suspects that there are a lot of other sounds and styles in their arsenal, which will be unleashed in due course. The band have a knack and talent for hooks and lines that have memorable pop swing, as well as steely kicks to them. Each member plays their part brilliantly, and there is no sense of anyone trying to steal the limelight: everything supports and blends together to create the best sound. In spite of some White Stripes ruminations and interjected spirit, nothing comes off as tributing. It is a fresh and urgent sound that is a fond departure and needed remedy to counteract a lot of modern bands and sounds, which are, with all the best will in the world, stale and forgettable. Some new groups such as The Strypes (stupid name aside): with all their Beatle-esque ’60s style and raw energy, are worthy of consideration and support, but too many are contended to offer precious little memorability. What the group intend to do for the rest of 2013, is hard to say: touring, an E.P./album in the works, or another single, perhaps. There is a market need and gap that needs to be filled with garage rock contenders and bands such as Love L.U.V. Let’s just hope that whatever comes next…
HAS the same kick as In My Daydreams.
UPCOMING GIGS (SO FAR):
July 4th – Paper Dress Vintage, London
July 13th -East End Live Festival, London.