Album release: 'Are You OK?' by Wasuremono
Release date: 14 June 2019
More info: Band website
Wasuremono have announced their new album 'Are You OK?' will be released on June 14th. Today, they have also shared the title track from the album after teasing the news with previous single 'Lonely Type'.
Listen/watch new single 'Are You OK?' YouTube.
Listen/watch previous single 'Lonely Type' via YouTube.
Pre-order album 'Are You OK?' here.
In 2018, Wasuremono made quite the impression; with the release of their self-titled debut album, Steve Lamacq’s invite to record a live session for BBC 6 Music at the legendary Maida Vale Studios, Lauren Laverne describing them as a “favourite”, supporting both the The Flaming Lips and Phosphorescent on tour, and playing at iconic venues such as Shepherd’s Bush Empire.
New album, ‘Are You OK?’ was written and recorded by multi-instrumentalist William Southward in his shed. On the newly released title track, Southward has said that the song, "seemed to turn into a pep talk to myself, with themes and sounds of the seaside and clearing the mind asking yourself or someone else ‘Are you ok?’. It’s got a really 80’s vibe to this song with the help from the Linn Drum Computer pounding through the song backed up with synth sounds played on an old Yamaha Dx7."
With the enlistment of friends Madelaine Ryan, Isaac Phillips, and Phoebe Phillips, Southward’s songs come to life. Wasuremono will be performing across the UK this summer in support of 'Are You OK?', with stops at festivals including Live at Leeds, The Great Escape, Bluedot, and Dot To Dot, as well as a headline show at the Sebright Arms in London on June 19th. Full details here.
The Japanese word ‘wasuremono’ or, ‘忘れ物’ in kanji characters, roughly translates to “something forgotten or left behind.” Within the first few bars of Wasuremono’s new album ‘Are You OK?’, feelings of isolation, fear, defensiveness, and inherited reservations, are forgotten or left behind. It may sound like a tall task, but somehow, they nail it. “We will find you, we will, we will work it out!”, the climactic track ‘Self-Help’ reassures.
2018 was quite a year for Wasuremono; with the release of their self-titled debut album, Steve Lamacq’s invite to record a live session for BBC 6 Music at the legendary Maida Vale Studios, Lauren Laverne describing them as a “favourite”, supporting both the The Flaming Lips and Phosphorescent on tour and playing at iconic venues such as Shepherd’s Bush Empire – no mean feat considering the debut album was conceived and recorded in a garden shed.
‘Are You OK?’ was also written and recorded by multi-instrumentalist William Southward in his shed. “It’s a tiny space at the bottom of the garden, crammed with old instruments I have been collecting over the years and the sounds of birds occasionally spilling into the recordings”, explains Southward. With the enlistment of friends Madelaine Ryan, Isaac Phillips, and Phoebe Phillips, Southward’s songs come to life. ‘Are You OK?’ is an immersive kaleidoscopic collection that plunges the listener deep into an invigorating world of sanguine synths, radiant harmonies and salient percussion that is repeatedly sublime. Although the atmosphere of the album is mostly one of hope and assurance, it stylistically travels through baggy electronica, mesmeric psychedelia, wonderfully futuristic (or is it wonderfully retro?) pop, to off-kilter almost surf-rock on tracks like ‘A Lesson To Learn’.
The enveloping percussion on the release was central to its creation, explains Southward, “Most of this album was written around an old Linn Drum Computer that I managed to get my hands on last year. I had always really liked the distinct 80’s sound of the Linn Drum, made famous by the likes of Prince, Gary Numan, and Peter Gabriel, and it was a fun and unique process writing songs around the beats I programmed in.” Southward puts the fizz and pop of the record down to “all the songs on the album being the original demos; There always seems to be a magic in the original take of a song, that’s impossible to put your finger on and equally hard to replicate when you then try to re-record it.”
Despite the palpable emotion and fragility in the vocals, the layered production and distinctive melodies work to shift the focus from the intensity of the lyrical content, something Southward has recognised, “Unconsciously a lot of the songs I have written over the last year seem to explore mental health at some level, so ‘Are You OK? seemed a fitting title. I liked the idea of sugar coating the ‘Are You OK?’ slogan, which is something we can all be guilty of doing when portraying our lives, whether that’s online or to each other in person. Underneath all this though, is the more serious question that I think we should be asking each other and ourselves; Are You OK? Let’s talk…”
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