Leatherette – Sunbathing

Posted: 13 September 2022 in Singles and EPs
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Bronson Recordings

Christopher Nosnibor

Life’s short. Too short. It may not always seem it, when you’re slugging through long days in grinding employment that earns a wage that buys less by the year – or, right now, by the week – or when you’re sitting in waiting rooms in doctors or dentists or hospitals, or waiting for trains or busses, ever fewer and ever later. Life as lived, in real-time, is often a drag. But then you realise a year, three, five, ten, has evaporated while you’ve been willing each day to pass just so you can move on from it and move on to the evening, the weekend, a better future that never comes.

But even when time drags, we’re busy and don’t have time to waste on shit we don’t want to do, beyond the work, the groceries, the bill-paying, the essentials. What little leisure time we have that we’re awake enough to enjoy is too little to squander on crap that isn’t the crap we want to spent it on, meaning life’s too short for crap bands and crap music.

On opening the email urging me to listen to the latest from Leatherette, the single ‘Sunbathing’, lifted from their upcoming debut album Fiesta, out on 14th October, my heart sank as my slow, scrolling broadband, revealed a promo short of the Bologne-based quintet a segment at a time.

Turns out they’re infinitely better to listen to than they look, and ‘Sunbathing’ very much fits with everything I’ve just said about life being too short. It’s pitched as a ‘song about hope, dreaming of a better life and telling the world to go f**k itself when needed. It sounds loud, fast and rough, an irresistible punk-shoegaze anthem’, and the band explains that “‘Sunbathing’ was almost born as a joke, it came out of nowhere. We wanted to write a happy cheesy pop song and then completely destroy it from within”.

And they succeed: in the space of just over a minute and a half, they throw down a sackload of post-punk angularity delivered with a rawness that brings real bite. Drawing on a broad range of stylistic elements all tangled together, it’s simultaneously familiar-feeling and fresh, not to mention exhilarating, with squalling guitars howling through a rack of effects lurking behind a pleasant jangle and played at a frantic pace, propelled by some whirlwind drumming. It’s a rush, a clash of sensations, disaffected and yet uplifting. Short lives demand short songs, and with ‘Sunbathing’, Leatherette are spot on.

AA

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