Cut open Civil Partnership’s ‘Good Morning Britain’ and it bleeds apathy. Influenced by Daily Mail comment sections and the psychedelic grunge of the 90s, the song leads you through the slow build up of a bad trip. Slow and drawling, heady and magnetic, it is John Cooper Clarke in Alice’s Wonderland.
Formed in the post-Brexit universe of 2017, Civil Partnership has grown a steady following within the independent music scene as a collective that values a DIY approach to sound and vision. What’s produced is something raw, something interesting that you can sink your teeth into, and their release of ‘Good Morning Britain’ exemplifies this.
In echoes of Slowdive, Pixies, and The Flaming Lips, Civil Partnership perfectly balances the light and the dark, in a chiaroscuro of British angst. The drums get inside your head in the way that you can sometimes hear your own heart beating between your ears when you do a handstand, or when you’re about to have a panic attack. There’s something disjointed and unnerving in the way everything fits together but doesn’t quite. You could lie back and let the riffs carry you away, but the lyrics are almost insidiously muttered into your ears, keeping you on edge. The words form a bitter stream of consciousness, praising Piers Morgan with the terrifying 21st Century phrase: “He’s not afraid to say it like it is, and I respect that.”
The song is pulled forward by a steady crescendo, the mutter growing to a snarl with “Are you feeling gorgeous?” becoming a primal yell. But are you feeling gorgeous? The question almost feels like an intrusive thought – Are you? I bet you’re not. You’re standing outside of a hair loss clinic, wearing a motorcycle helmet to hide the bald spots, your insecurities latching onto outraged voices on the TV. Maybe they can teach you how to feel gorgeous, powerful, and in complete control.
Photo by Julia Kobak
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