Veronica Falls - Waiting For Something To Happen
Might as well get this out of the way: I'm not the biggest fan of 'twee'. Jangle-pop tunes about kissing with dry lips whilst listening to Amelia Fletcher almost bring up a hairball made of multi-coloured wool, they make me gag so much. Get your oh-so-sincere zine about how many people's hands you've held away from me, thanks.
So why do I love Veronica Falls? For much the same reason I love Belle & Sebastian, the group that can melt the heart of any of my Field Mice-bashing brethren: they may carry some of the musical hallmarks of the genre – the C86-guitars, boy/girl melodies and Phil Spector drumming is usually the best part of the twee aesthetic – but the lyrics don't follow their simplistic lead.
Like their eponymous first album – and that of every other indie rock band in their vein for twenty years – Waiting For Something To Happen is a compendium of love songs. The voices and guitars of Roxanne Clifford and James Hoarne intertwine, play off each other and at times clash in a pleasing manner; the drums are a steady Meg White beat; the bass keeps everything trundling along nicely. Everything is sweetly worn, but masking a prickly thorn – their songs of romantic longing have an extra, deliciously morbid shade to them.
'Buried Alive' and 'My Heartbeat' take breakout single 'Found Love In A Graveyard' a step further, flirting with Gothic romance (or maybe just borderline necrophilia); songs about missed opportunities, such as high point 'Teenage' or the title-track, sound less like nostalgic whining and more a cruel twist of temporal fate; 'Everybody's Changing' makes abandonment by a lover out to be a death sentence.
Veronica Falls' ingenious move is paring the light and the dark in a way that keeps the macabre an enjoyably gruesome subtext that doesn't turn the record septic with gloom, and that glimmer of Brontë horror keeps the music throwing up too many negative associations.
A noticeable step up from their début – which the group put down to being more adept at their instruments, also responsible for the increased lightness of touch - Waiting For Something To Happen is the catchiest, most enjoyable indie rock album about love and death I've heard this year (so far).
Purchase and listen
The Lexington is a trendy little pub venue of the kind that seems generally packed out with those either in the industry or those wanting to be in the industry, as well as putting on a selection of gigs that cover both the heydays of indie past and the promise of indie future. The Fortuna Pop Label took heed of this wonderful (and all in my mind) creed in order to put on three bands who bought the indie kids, old and new, swarming to the quaintly welcoming pub in question. Veronica Falls ... [read more]
Label: Troubled Records Release date: 01/03/10 Website: Myspace Featuring present and ex-members of Sexy Kids, The Royal We and Your Twenties, London-based Veronica Falls are one of the hotly tipped bands for 2010 and Iâm sure most of you have already heard of them and had a listen to âFound Love In A Graveyardâ on some blog or cool indie music magazine, so I guess the band doesnât need much introduction. Opening with jangly guitars and heavy, solemn drums, âFound Love In A... [read more]
Label: No Pain in Pop Release date: 14/06/10 Link: Myspace The Jesus and Mary Chain, Pixies, The Pastels, The Raveonettes and so on. If that's the sorta thing you're into then 'Beachy Head' will knock you out cold on the floor, your mother will have to revive you with a much-thumbed 1985 copy of Melody Maker. This is a thundering single that sounds like it was recorded in a church courtesy of some liberal free-thinking bishop. This is some irresistible faux-surf rock that although it isn... [read more]
Tonight Heaven plays host to a Shockwaves NME Awards show which will be headlined by Sunderland's favourite sons Frankie & The Heartstrings, who are also celebrating the release of their debut album which came out today. Before we get to all of that though, London's Veronica Falls have the honour of opening proceedings - and a stellar job they do, too. They play their way, at break-neck speed, through an impressive repertoire of distorted lo-fi, indie-pop gems. Songs like 'Found Love In A Gr... [read more]