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ISLET

Islet

Soft Fascination

    The genre-defying Welsh group define their vision with a breath-taking new album, Islet’s ‘Soft Fascination’ is an ecstatic experience in music, an explosion of emotion subsumed in sound. The album is filled with high energy cadence and meditations on collective joy, a balancing act underpinned with glorious melodies and Emma Daman Thomas’ evocative vocals that swirl in the symphonic surf. Self-produced, and with instruments recorded live with few overdubs, the effect is direct, it veers from the upfront and immediate to the spacious and challenging.

    The first half is intentionally fast, intense, almost relentless. The second half is more spacious, as the album unravels and becomes more hazy. There is excitement and fascination and a willingness to show a lack of restraint in realising it, traversing hailstorms, hedgerows, broken promises and poisoned prayers; constantly breathing real life all in. Featuring standout singles: the pulsating ‘Euphoria’, the liberating flow of energy on ‘River Body’ and the recurring conundrum of choice of ‘Hat Person’, ‘Soft Fascination’ is an album of rare beauty.

    TRACK LISTING

    A1 Euphoria
    A2 River Body
    A3 Sherry
    A4 Flailing
    A5 Hat Person
    B1 An Open Door
    B2 Woolgathering
    B3 Lemons
    B4 Sleepwalker In A Fog
    B5 Discipline
    B6 Kits

    Islet

    Eyelet

      A Powys trio whose free-spirited invention and exuberant intensity flows through experimental pop: hypnotic, exhilarating and defiantly unique. The Welsh band Islet return with the release of their long-awaited new album.

      Eyelet was recorded at home tucked away in the hills of rural Mid Wales. It took form the months following the birth of band members Emma and Mark Daman Thomas’ second child and the death of fellow band member Alex Williams’ mother. Alex came to live with Emma and Mark, and the band enlisted Rob Jones (Pictish Trail, Charles Watson) to produce.

      ‘Caterpillar’ described by Emma as “a song for my unborn child”. It's followed by syncopated lullaby ‘Good Grief’ with its haunting keyboard hook and icy percussion thawed by Emma’s yearning vocals about the quiet strength of generations of women. With nods towards Arthur Russell and Jenny Hval, ‘Geese’ is a mini symphony of driven electronica inspired by Welsh cultural theorist Raymond Williams’ novel People Of The Black Mountains.

      Young Fathers inflected rhythm can be heard on ‘Radel 10’ that accompanies the multi-tracked variations of Emma and defiant lyrics that were inspired in part by The Good Immigrant - the landmark anthology of essays on race and immigration by BAME writers.

      STAFF COMMENTS

      Barry says: Islet were one of the first bands I saw play when I moved to Wales, and remained a mainstay on my shelves since that day. Whilst their groove has morphed, and the frenetic energy has both waxed and waned, the output has remained undeniably brilliant. 'Eyelet' is on the more relaxing side, but absolutely glimmers with astoundingly written pop songs and immersive, soaring heft. Their greatest work to date, in a catalogue of gold.

      TRACK LISTING

      Side A
      A1 Caterpillar
      A2 Good Grief
      A3 Treasure
      A4 Geese
      A5 Sgwylfa Rock

      Side B
      B1 Radel 10
      B2 Clouds
      B3 Florist
      B4 Moon
      B5 No Host
      B6 Gyratory Circus


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