Single Review – Alvvays – Lollipop (Ode To Jim)

A celebration of all things sugary sweet but with a wonderfully noisy layered instrumentation Alvvay’s new single ‘Lollipop (Ode To Jim), taken from the band’s new album ‘Antisocialities’, has the kind of swaying, shimmering, melody that seems glittered covered straight from the early nineties. Written after sharing the stage with ‘Jesus & The Mary Chain’, where vocalist Molly Rankin sang the anthemic ‘Just Like Honey’, ‘Lollipop (Ode To Jim) is undeniably a love note to the band, I mean Jim Reid is mentioned in the opening line: ‘Saw Jim Reid in the Corridor and wondered if he could ever see me that way, he was on my list at the grocery store when you grabbed my wrist and said you liked my keychain.’ With lines like these the single’s true charm comes from Alvvay’s ability to keep things feeling realistic inspite of an obvious daydreaming storyline. 

Hayley Miller

Single Review – Alvvays – Dream Tonite

Second single from Canada’s Alvvay’s soon to be released second album, ‘Antisocialites’ – due Sept 8th- ‘Dream Tonite’ is a drifting antisocial daydream set on an average city bus route. Turning loneliness into a modern fairy tale, with the air of a more hopeful Lana Del Ray, lead singer Molly Rankin creates an atmosphere it’s difficult to avoid swooning at. Written alone in an abandoned Toronto Island school room Rankin has keeps things lyrically quiet lulled as the track unwinds fragments of an imagined romance turned cold, while still managing to maintain a youthful indie poetic optimism in adversity, and also including the band’s future album title; ‘In fluorescent light, antisocialites watch a wilting flower’. There is a feeling of school girl heartbreak, a copy of Wuthering Heights tucked into a backpack, about ‘Dream Tonite’ that the track’s bridge encapsulates perfectly, a mournful bitter edge to the Rankin’s gentle words; ‘your face was supposed to be hanging over me like a rosary, so morose for me; seeing ghosts of me; writing oaths to me’. Though ‘Dream Tonite’ is a rather gloomy fantasy of lost love the songs starry eyed feel and simple repeated phrases are enough to keep this dream enchanting.

Hayley Miller

Musical World Tour – Canada – Alvvays – Next of Kin

Gig Review – Alvvays and Moon King at Think Tank, Newcastle

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Alvvays took charge of the Think Tank in Newcastle last night for what was all in all a chilled out and swaying affair as the Nova Scotia via Toronto band dished out some melodic and at times swooning surf rock and pop. After setting up their own instruments and declaring that “we’ve already blew up one amp today” they hammered out an hour long set of tracks off their self titled 2014 debut LP. Naturally tracks like ‘Archie, Marry Me’ got the crowd swaying in contentment (myself included) and singing along with Molly’s wistful and sweeping vocals. These vocals really came into their own for the gracious and contemplative tracks like ‘Ones Who Love You’. After blasting out ‘Adult Diversion’ for an apt and catchy conclusion, they returned for an encore that included a new track and a warning about the hordes of clubbers massing below. Between tracks they were a picture of Canadian politeness talking of being happy to be playing in “their ancestral homeland” and bemoaning how “more people have heard of Nova Scotia in the U.K than in the U.S”. They were preceded by fellow Canadian four piece Moon King. They delivered a rough and distorted sound entwined with the vocal harmonies to counter act them. They did their set without any bass at all and with the lead guitarist occasionally moving down to the lower chords. All in all it was an intimate and relaxed gig with all the right amounts of sweet rhythms and melody as you’d expect. Oh and a belated happy birthday to Keyboardist Kerri, who’s birthday it was yesterday!