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Lip Filler wrestle with metropolitan existence on "Haircut"

08 February 2023, 09:30 | Written by Olivia Stock

London swagger meets digi-dystopian storytelling on Lip Filler’s new anti-gentrification anthem, "Haircut".

When Oliver Twist said “please sir, may I have some more?”, he may well have heard the debut single from West London newbies, Lip Filler. Luckily the fivesome - vocalist and keys player George, guitarists Jude and Verity, bassist Theo, and drummer Nate - are back with another tasty helping of paranoia-infused dance-punk, cooked up from their shared flat above a chicken shop in Shepherd's Bush.

“‘Haircut’ is about adapting to a metropolitan lifestyle and constantly being over-stimulated and confronted by technology,” the band share on the single. “We all moved to London at a weird and unwelcoming time, so we feel these lyrics resemble the headspace we approached after moving to the city.”

Propelled by a gritty noughties-leading bassline but pocketed with left-field Gen-Z loops and glitches, it’s a thrilling re-entry point into Lip Filler's cerebral sonic world which expands with every cut they unleash. Conceptually, the single is equally abundant, interrogating the overstimulating nature of modern technology and the simultaneous entropy and emptiness of London life: “Minesweeper of a schedule / This city kinda sucks.”

It’s the band’s second track produced by St Francis Hotel (Little Simz, Greentea Peng, Michael Kiwanuka), but their first on tastemaker imprint Chess Club Records who were similarly infatuated by Lip Filler’s disarming charm. A flurry of shows have seen them build a small but dogged fanbase, but with choruses as vast and voracious as on "Haircut", it seems likely the band will find new heights on festival stages later this year.

The single comes with the quintet’s first music video in tow, co-directed by the band themselves alongside burgeoning Falmouth filmmaker, Olaf Lawrence. A fish-eyed, 4:3 film reel taped between Frome in Somerset and their micro flat in West London, it triumphantly brings to life their tale of hedonistic yearnings and deep-set metropolitan angst. There’s also a food fight. “The concept of the video was one that we’d had brewing for a little while and (being the case with most of our ideas) it took a while to refine and logically plan out," Lip Filler explained.

"For our first video – we wanted to ensure we captured who we all are as people and more importantly as a band. We did this by splitting the video so that some of the scenes were shot in our hometown and the rest were shot in our kitchen. It was great fun. The two separate locations correlate to the themes of the song about moving from the country and adjusting to the city lifestyle."

Maybe the key ingredient for making stellar dance-punk is the aroma of chicken. At least they won’t have far to travel far for a date with Amelia.

“Haircut” is out now. Find Lip Filler on Instagram.

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