In 2014, shoegaze pioneers Slowdive and Ride both announced reunions. A cynic might say this was due to some combination of nostalgia, revivalism, and paychecks too large to ignore. But it also felt like an attempt at reclaiming an under-appreciated musical legacy; a response to the growing number of unremarkable imitators that had clambered in to fill the void left by their absence.
London foursome Lull may have shared a starting point with those imitators, inspired by the sounds of their formative years. Their self-titled debut EP makes excellent use of hallmarks of shoegaze and 90s alternative rock. Dreamy, disaffected vocals are paired with crashing, cymbal-heavy drums and feedback-drenched guitars create a wall of sound that warps and wavers under its own weight. But the four tracks presented here outpace nostalgia for any particular decade, revealing a combination of ambition and ability that will serve the band well in creating a legacy all their own.
Read the band's guide and stream below.
"This is the first track we played together and knew we had something good going. I wrote the track years before, but it was much more lo-fi and droney. It wasn’t until we tried it together that everything suddenly clicked into place. The song is about experiencing something so beautiful that you feel every second is a dream, but then you realise it’s just your stupid projections and naiveté making you blind to the reality."
"I feel like we wanted to write a more straightforward pop song with Dead or Alone. There’s a clarity most evident on this track between Toby (guitar) and my playing style. Toby gets these big, fizzing chords to somehow work with my softer style that gives a tonal dissonance I love. People say you can never go home again and I kind of feel that way in this song. What is home? It doesn’t feel like a building or place to me. Maybe it’s the people around you, I don’t know. I tend to live in the moment and I guess the song was my way of figuring out that it’s okay to feel a little unsettled."
"There was some debate on this track as to whether we were going to keep a simple, chord-only style, free of lead parts, or make it more complex. I’m glad we stuck with the former, as I feel like the song has a meditative quality to it, with the drawn out vocals and hazy repetition. Break Hearts is basically a sad love song, it’s about experiencing all the qualities that love brings, but without ‘feeling’ love on that critical, dangerous level that keeps you alive."
"Diving is another old one of mine that was originally acoustic. We kept the swaying rhythm from that and just gave it some more power. I can’t help but imagine a Grimm version of The Owl and the Pussycat when I hear it. The song is about the journey of two people out to sea, but then for unbeknown reasons one of them falls in, maybe on purpose. The narrative follows the flow of the song, with these breezy, optimistic chords and siren-like lead signalling the beginning and the later switch to the distorted storm mirroring the journey’s dark end. Who knows, maybe they got saved."