They delivered one of the brightest, most inspiring debut EPs of the year. They've toured with some of the most exciting bands in the UK including Wolf Alice and alt-J. They've made us believe in guitars again. Twisted indie-pop lot Gengahr have had one hell of a 2015 and now they're about to erupt with the release of their superb debut album, A Dream Outside.
Below the North London four-piece guide us through the inspiration for each track - from loneliness and Disney films, to mellowness and grunge.
This is probably the oldest song on the album and was taken from our first set of demos. It was written mostly out of frustration at a time when I was unsure of my future - I was really questioning what the hell I was doing with my life at this point!
She's A Witch
Another one of our earliest songs. It has a sort of disco canter throughout which makes it possibly the most up-beat track on the album. The original demo version had such a good feel to it that when it came to making the album version we just re-recorded a few choice bits and mixed it again.
With this song I was thinking a lot about all the Disney films I'd watched as a child and how the beautiful princesses were always portrayed as weak and vulnerable, relying on the help of some courageous young man. Growing up you realise how strange and dated that fantasy is and I wanted to rewrite my own Disney classic where the weakness now lies within the male. The heroine providing the strength and purpose they both need to survive.
Bathed In Light
This is one of the more mellow moments on the album. There is lots of space in the track for the melody to breath whilst the bass and drums keep everything anchored. We had loads of fun with the guitar sounds on this track and there are some pretty mental noises in there.
Where I lie
Probably our most obvious nod to the grunge kids we used to be. There is sort of a 'Smells like teen spirit' rhythm on the guitars which eventually breaks free from the track and explodes into an earth shattering solo.
This track is quite unique on the album in the way in which it was put together. Originally it was a more traditional song but we weren't entirely happy with it. We had plans to write an instrumental that would break up both sides of the album and thought perhaps with a a few alterations this could work. Essentially we re-mixed our own song!
This was one of the last things we wrote before the album was completed. I think we all liked it because it sounded so different to the rest of the stuff we had recorded. It's about being caught up in someone else's relationship. The dangers of moving from friendship to love and how tough it is to go back once you have made that move.
The first single we put out, this track originally wasn't going to be on the album. It's a song that almost didn't get recorded in the first place. We hadn't even finished writing it really when we did the original demo and it just so happened that we had some time left over so we thought we may as well give it a shot. The demo came out with such energy and venom that i think we were all surprised. When it came to doing the track listing for the album it just didn't feel right not to have 'Powder' in there somewhere.
Fill My Gums With Blood
The second time we went in to the studio we recorded the demo version of this song. Similarly to 'She's A Witch' We liked the vibe of the demo so much that when it came to the album version we ended up going back to this version and just re-recording a few bits before mixing it again. This was the first song of ours that got played on the radio so in a way it feels a little bit like our breakthrough song on the album.
Lonely As A Shark
This is one of the first songs we wrote and it's a special one for me. It came about at a time when I didn't see much of my friends or family. I was working a lot and living out in the middle of nowhere. I don't think it was a very happy time in my life but this song is something good that came out of it at least.
We only wrote this a week or so before we finished the entire record. We recorded it in like one take and it just had a really nice, easy vibe to it. We all knew right away that this track should close out the album.
A Dream Outside is out now via Transgressive.