The insatiable high of live music. You never can get quite enough of it. Add the fact that we’re no longer getting it at all, and we can only ask what should we do with our sonically starved selves now? A positive first step on the winding road back to salvation would be to blast Blanketman’s debut EP ‘National Trust’ through your speakers. Masking melancholy with a high-on-life approach to music making, the EP was recorded live with producer Luke Smith (Foals, Depeche Mode) and promises all the energy of a sweat coated basement gig.
If we can’t fulfil our yearly quota of Brit abroad bad behaviour any time soon, then opening single ‘Beach Body’ has got us covered. Soaring on an oh so catchy chorus of whirring guitars and punchy percussion, it’s a bright-sided number for the get up and go days. In similar remits, on the retrospective ‘Leave The South’ frontman Adam Hopper bridges the gap between post-punk and your hidden closet of unashamed pop music, with his ardent yet jovial delivery. Assuming the role of poster boy for the National Trust, the title track is enough to give Jilted John’s ‘True Love Stories’ a run for their money.
Ploughing through the angst, the destressed riffs and distorted vocals of ‘Harold’ are reminiscent of one too many sleepless nights. Hopper comments: “Harold is an ode to that crippling fright in the night. To things that don’t go bump but go “aaaargh”. If you’ve not been there then you’re the lucky one, and if you have then this perturbing track should go some way to exorcise the memories. Equally sensitive in subject, blink and you’ll miss the unsettling undertones to ‘Blue Funk’s pleasing ride of convivial grooves. Not to be trifled with, ‘Dogs Die In Hot Cars’ is a humdinger of a reminder to lockdown pooch purchasers; don’t forget about them “next time you get some booze from the SPAR”.
With enough oohs and aahs to last a summertime of festival singalongs, the ‘National Trust’ EP sees the Mancs whistling merrily away on the lighter side of post-punk. With the hope of live music’s safe return on the horizon, Blanketman are the perfect warm up to a year well spent.
‘National Trust’ is out now via Pias. Listen in full here.
The new issue of So Young is out now. It’s sold out in print but you can read the digital edition below.