In recent weeks, several exciting new acts have performed across Berlin (which, of the places I’ve visited, is my favourite) at a number of festivals across the German capital. Of course, the sound of some of these wonderful bands in a location that I love just makes me yearn to return. The First We Take Berlin festival at the start of September exemplifies this desire, where the likes of Flyte, Catfish and the Bottlemen and Fickle Friends dazzled in the dying German sun.
The latter of these three, Fickle Friends, have absolutely exploded in the last year. Describing their sound as “80’s new wave pop“, the quintet from Brighton have amassed over a million plays across platforms with their first two singles ‘Swim’ and ‘Play’, both of which have made the New Moons compilations. If you haven’t listened to the group before, there are certain things you’ll find in every track: Natassja’s shining vocals, woozy synths, guitars that sound similar to old-Black Kids (‘Hit the Heartbrakes’), and summer sounds, even if the lyricism isn’t as sun-soaked as it lets on.
This trend continues into their third single ‘For You’, which tracks the realisation that your relationship isn’t going anywhere. So, it’s not the happiest lyrically speaking, but musically? It’s like looking into the sun, leaving an imprint in your head of the big hooks, dazzling synths and guitars, held together by a great rhythm section. In the final days of summer, it’s wonderful to see this beacon of summer cling on to the remnants of the shimmering bright thing in the sky.
Having played internationally and closer to home (The Great Escape 2014) this year, as well as touring with JAWS in September, it’s worth remembering the name as 2015 is rapidly looking like it’ll be their year.
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Review by Ollie Salter |