|Audiobooks — Now! (in a minute) (2 Nov 2018)
Audiobooks — Now! (in a minute) (2 Nov 2018)ζ¤ζ Speaking about the track, audiobooks say: “We wrote and recorded this on the 2nd day we hung out. Evangeline was so excited to do more work that she travelled across London in her Batman pyjamas so as not to waste any time.”
Style: Electronic/Avant Garde/Synth/Jazz
Album release: 2 Nov 2018
Record Label: Heavenly Recordings
01. Mother Hen 4:27
02. Hot Salt 3:40
03. It Get Be So Swansea 2:56
04. Friends In the Bubble Bath 4:38
05. Womanly Blood 3:10
06. Grandma Jimmy 2:50
07. Dance Your Life Away 4:06
08. Call Of Duty Free 4:52
09. Period Talk 1:51
10. Spooky Algorithms 4:12
11. Dealing With Hoarders 4:25
12. Car Sick 1:34
13. Pebbles 5:36
℗ 2018 Heavenly Recordings under exclusive license to [PIAS]
By Kitty Richardson / 31 OCTOBER 2018, 15:08 GMT / Score: 8
✹ Audiobooks introduce themselves in style with their wildly entertaining debut LP.
✹ I guess it’d be a real bummer if a band called Audiobooks didn’t have a decent backstory.
✹ A month after Welsh producer/mixer/engineer David Wrench moved to London, he met 21 year old Evangeline Ling at a mutual friend’s party. At the time, Ling had been obsessively tapping out strange stories into her phone, fragments too short to be put to print. Instead, David suggested they try them to music. It took a day for the odd couple to start work, and tracks formed within hours of each other. Ling’s second trip to David’s studio was marked by her turning up in Batman pyjamas — the only clean clothes she had available — having been left sleepless by coursing inspiration.
✹ And so came Audiobooks and their debut LP Now! (In a Minute), the product of this intense collaboration between an art student and a producer whose credits include Let’s Eat Grandma and Zun Zun Egui. The results are expectedly bonkers, with some of Ling’s tales ushered into songs and others scored by improvisations, the collection bound by a deeply English eccentricity and a shared love of pop music’s spikier edges.
✹ Half of the record is dedicated to concrete hits, of which recent single „Hot Salt“ is a choice example — a sort of „Don’t You Want Me Baby“ if that track had more sitar and made less sense. This is one of the few places where Wrench’s shy vocal pops up — a strange and beautiful counterpoint to Ling’s whooping sing~talk. „Dance Your Life Away“, too, makes good on its nominal promise. The three minutes of clattering percussion and throbbing disco funk features Ling hollering about getting waxed, a fittingly bizarre stab at a Friday night serenade. And somewhere between dancefloor and bedroom, there’s vocoder~smooth „It Get Be So Swansea“ and shuffling lullaby „Mother Hen“, the latter’s lofi drum machine and bubbling synths recalling the best of Broadcast.
✹ Slid between these tightly~wound pop tunes are the album’s non~songs, much closer in kind to performance art. Here, Wrench turns to electronic noodling and Ling’s staging of her off~beat tales takes the floor. If this description conjures a feverish fear~of~pretension in your chest, a hard ditto. But there’s something about Ling’s use of language, coupled with Wrench’s virtuosity in the live room, which makes these peculiar tracks mesmerising.
✹ On „Grandma Jimmy“, for example, Ling narrates a family’s mid~summer trip to Devon, the visceral detail scored by a lazy, guitar~laden groove supplied by Wrench. In her description of a claustrophobic car journey with the title’s drunken matriarch, Ling is genuinely hilarious, showcasing an affected Home Counties slur as she documents dangerous driving and the tuna sandwiches melting under the car~sick dog’s belly.
✹ „Call of Duty Free“ is also a riot; the tale of tragic teenage lovers Austria and Lewis Lane and their ill~advised plan to take a holiday abroad, under which Wrench builds a snarling bed of discordant synths. Ling’s embodiment of her characters lifts each track to charm and unsettle in tandem — whether pitched down and crooning as Austria’s creepy boyfriend, or nasal through the airport lounge’s imagined speakers, directing said boyfriend to Gate 666.
✹ On the whole, Now! (In a Minute) is wildly entertaining. From delightfully wonky dancefloor fillers to tangled electronics, Wrench’s seasoned production skills pay off again and again. Audiobooks also manage to play (and it does feel like play) with deeply human themes like coming of age, familial dysfunction and young love without ever losing their undeniable mystique. Like an odd but enviably~dressed couple you might spot on public transport, their connection is palpable, and you can’t help but desire to know more — maybe everything — about them. This is clearly the start of something very, very special. ✹ https://www.thelineofbestfit.com/
✹ Audiobooks is the new project from super~producer/mixer David Wrench (Frank Ocean, The xx, Caribou, FKA Twigs) and artist/model Evangeline Ling. The duo began making music after a chance meeting at a party. Audiobooks ride the sharp neon lines that run between the north Wales coast and the grubby heart of after~hours London. Stretched out over stuttering, glitchy glam electronics, their songs are woozy fly~on~the~wall accounts and out of body journeys through the capital at night.
✹ On the face of it, Evangeline Ling — a 21~year~old art student and musician from Wimbledon – and David Wrench – one of the most in demand mixers and producers in modern music, a sometime cohort of Julian Cope and former denizen of North Wales — might seem an unlikely pairing. Yet a chance encounter at a mutual friend’s party just one week after David had moved south to the capital very quickly led to an experimental studio session that’s been going on ever since.
✹ Evangeline: “I’d found myself writing these odd stories as text messages on my phone. They were too short to be proper stories… they were fragments. I’d told David about them when we met and he said, “’Come into the studio and let’s put them to music.’” The next day, we started making music.”
✹ David: “Neither of us are any good at small talk so we just got working and it was crazily fast, everything about it. We’ve never spent more than an hour on a track.”
✹ Evangeline: “We’d work on a track and then we’d just sit and do nothing. He’d work on a mix for someone or play some records, I’d have a nap or paint or draw…”
✹ David: “The second time Evangeline turned up at the studio she arrived in her pyjamas. She’d come all the way from Wimbledon to east London in a pair of Batman pyjamas.”
✹ Evangeline: “I hadn’t slept all night, I’d just had this crazy adrenaline. I knew we were doing something really special and I couldn’t wait to get there. I didn’t have any clean clothes, so I just thought, ‘Sod this, I’ve got to go’.”
✹ From their first meeting, Evangeline and David’s friendship has been influenced by the records they flipped through in his newly set up studio in Old Street. Very quickly, the pair found inspiration in music by artists as diverse as Bauhaus, Aphrodite’s Child, Marilyn Manson, Michael Jackson, Flower Travellin Band, the Fall, Faust, Tropicáalia and Dory Previn.
✹ Evangeline: “Dory frickin Previn, man.”
✹ David: “Her record Mythical Kings and Iguanas is an incredible piece of work; she really was a genius. Lyrically, that’s maybe the closest link to audiobooks.”
✹ If the bracingly honest and often troubled words of Previn helped influence Evangeline’s stories, the music they’re set to comes from an entirely different place. Having developed a kind of psychic musical response to Evangeline’s surrealist texts, David set about soundtracking the weird worlds she was delivering on a daily basis. Much of the resulting music — at times odd, beautiful, unique, hilarious, disquieting, pensive, hypnotic, open, free — is collected together on Now! (in a minute) — the mind~bending follow up to the head~turning four track Gothenburg EP and the duo’s first full length album.
✹ Like the band themselves, Now! (in a minute) doesn’t do the things that you’d expect. While opener ‘Mother Hen’ might be a modernist nursery rhyme sat atop skittering proggy electronics, the dual vocals on the tracks ‘Hot Salt’ and ‘Friends in the Bubble Bath’ perfectly channel the conflict and contradiction of ‘Don’t You Want Me’ (The Human League) into something ultra~modern and almost ludicrously addictive. Elsewhere, the primal, gothic drone of ‘Womanly Blood’ sits like a brooding weather condition until it rips apart thanks to some heavy percussive artillery from Warpaint’s Stella Mozgawa (the only other contributor to the record) and ‘Dance Your Life Away’ sounds like the soundtrack to the kind of inhibition free moon~light voodoo party that you wish your mates had invited you to at Glastonbury last year.
✹ A band that takes its cues from the King of Pop and The Antichrist Super~star, creates music in daily automatic writing sessions and rides the neon ley lines that connect of the North Wales coast to the psycho~bustle of afterhours London are clearly on a very singular path to greatness — a path they’re already someway down, having taken their first footsteps out of the studio and onto the stage for a handful of truly mesmerizing live shows.
✹ Time, then, to welcome these strange superheroes — this inhuman league — into your life. You might not know it yet but the story is already written. It says audiobooks are your new favourite band.
|Audiobooks — Now! (in a minute) (2 Nov 2018)