Wasuremono will release their new album “Are You OK?” Friday, June 14th, on The Wilderness Records. As a final taster of the release, the band have shared “Never Felt This Way Before” with a video to accompany it. The track was written by the brainchild of Wasuremono, William Southward, around the birth of his first child and his experience of fatherhood.

“It’s about moving on into the unknown. This song was written and dedicated to the new life coming into my world and the old ones leaving it”, Southward explains.

After a run of appearances at festivals including Live at Leeds, Stag & Dagger, The Great Escape, Dot to Dot this spring, the band will be celebrating with a headline show at London’s Sebright Arms next week as well as the newly announced Rough Trade in-store performance at Bristol on June 22nd.

Previously, the band released the brilliant single “Self-Help”, that has been picked up by the likes of 6 Music’s Lauren Laverne, Steve Lamacq, and Radio 1’s Huw Stephens, and lead to the band racking up over 200,000 monthly listeners on Spotify. Dork recently described the record as “…sure to be a riot of synths and fun. A magic combo”.

More on ‘Are You OK?’

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…”

‘Are You OK?’ Tracklisting:

1, Are You OK?

2, Lonely Type

3, School

4, Don’t Play With Ghosts (For Olive)

5, Never Felt This Way Before

6, Self-Help

7, One Last Trip

8, A Lesson To Learn

9, New York

10, Nothing Is Easy

11, Hail Ra!

 

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