Lucy Grubb - Bandicoot - Claire Whitehead
Norfolk-born songwriter Lucy Grubb is excited to announce the release of her long awaited third EP ‘Waste My Time’ due for release this summer - 4th June 2021, including first single ‘You Don’t Do Anything’ out now.
Known for blending of modern Americana with Country undertones, Lucy has built a prestigious reputation with the release of two previous EPs. 2017’s debut ‘18 Miles’ was named Best UK EP of the Year by country website Belles & Gals, followed by second EP ‘Dear Walter’ receiving a 5* review from Maverick Magazine.
After years of honing her skills at UK festivals such as Glastonbury, Red Rooster and Latitude, Lucy most recently headlined The Den Stage at Cambridge Folk Festival to a ‘rapturous reception’ - Nic Rigby, BBC News. Lucy has also showcased at 2020’s AmericanaFest UK and was set to perform at the renowned Country2Country Festival at the O2 London in March, which has now been postponed until 2022.
Recording began in late 2019 in a countryside recording studio in North Norfolk; a home from home for the band, also doubling as their rehearsal studio. Subsequent recording sessions resumed in pockets of lockdown freedom throughout 2020, with the process becoming flexible and adaptive, and comprised of many ‘band zoom calls’ using the treacherous countryside broadband.
“When we started this process I wasn’t sure what to expect at the end of it. Now I can quite confidently say that these songs sound like me, and they sound like my band, and it is my sound. At 23 I know I have plenty more to learn, and my music will change as I grow, but these songs are a product of the last year of my life.” Lucy Grubb
The tracks on Waste My Time explore elements of relationships with ourselves and others, opening with the title track representing the strength and resilience shown by friends facing difficult times and being OK with not being in control of everything. You Don’t Do Anything takes the EP to another level musically with almost tongue in cheek ode to Lucy’s beloved Country music. The pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, closing track When It Rains is a raw and openly emotional song; and despite its undeniable focus on sadness, it also shows it is perfectly normal to feel that way and one day you will get out of it.
==========================================================================Bandicoot - Worried Blues.
For Bandicoot "Worried Blues inhabits a world of paranoia, born from a fear of lost love. It carries you down labyrinthine streets like a nightmarish memory, with a contagious strutting rhythm which never lets you stop moving along with it.”
Never missing a beat or taking time to catch their breath Bandicoot are back with a new and impressive single.
‘Worried Blues’ starts with forceful piano chords and an anguished emotional vocal from Rhys Underdown, channeling John Lennon’s Plastic Ono Band primal scream as a voice from the dark. When ‘Worried Blues’ intro releases into a riff full of Talking Heads strutting art rock/ dance punk directness it leaves no doubt, Bandicoot are ‘The Sound of Young Wales!’.
==========================================================================Claire Whitehead - No Right Way, Louise.
Canadian folk-country songstress Claire Whitehead whisks listeners on a journey with her latest project, Thelma: A Country Opera — available now! And if the name sounds familiar, it should… Built through interpretation of the character Thelma of Thelma & Louise, Whitehead has churned a fable into a nine-track release about the fearlessness of the human spirit — including album closer, “No Right Way, Louise.”
“Thelma: A Country Opera is a ‘coming-of-agency’ story,” Whitehead explains. “It’s about the transformation of self and relationships when someone becomes disillusioned with the rules of our world.” As a storyteller, Whitehead commiserates with the protagonist through a series of emotion-driven songs that speak to Thelma’s internal journey, and the album’s live performance features video clips from the film to cue songs.
For its part, “No Right Way, Louise” chronicles Thelma’s ongoing dedication to her best friend. Whitehead’s delicate but piercing vocals churn out a near-plea to Louise as our heroine succumbs to the inevitability of failure to live a life of restraints, and rules. “And they’ll chase us down,” Whitehead coos, “And they’ll spit from a truck. So hand me that gun, cuz i’m I'm all out of luck.”
To tie the song together, Whitehead has self-produced a subsequent music video — a first in her lengthy career. “To make this video, I tried to celebrate the song’s theme of prioritizing female relationships, while working under the constraints of the pandemic,” Whitehead reveals. “This was the first official music video I’ve made, or released, and I did it completely DIY on camera phones and editing on my laptop.
“I was lucky enough to have my sister, Anne, to film the footage and a friend and vocalist from London Ontario, Imogen Wasse, who sings live with me and fosters a lot of positive energy in our performances. “The result has me feeling comfortable being silly on camera, while capturing the power of women working creatively together to make great things.”
For this track and album, Whitehead’s transfixing vocals, well-established melodic harmonies, authentic country twang with the truth bleeding in between the lines transports the listener into an entirely different place and time. “No Right Way, Louise” has Thelma declaring the final lessons of her journey, celebrating friendship, love, and resistance to the wrongs of our world. A multi-instrumentalist and veteran songwriter, where the album shines is Whitehead’s power to transcend you into the character’s story. Whitehead urges you to let go of reality for just a moment, while you walk Thelma’s path with her.
And as her journey unravels track by track, Whitehead grants the listener permission to read the finest print of detail on the most sacred part of a woman’s heart — her spirit. Whitehead’s ability to fully immerse herself into the arms of Thelma’s character and expose her layers far beyond what the silver screen wanted us to watch, is a testimony to this songstress’ uncanny ability to transform into whomever she needs to be to get the song right.