Maybe it is because I like being asleep more than I like being awake. Mainly because I can’t be a burden to anyone/anything. But when you are out of an evening, and it gets to around 2/3am..there’s a part of you that starts to think “Why am I doing this to myself? I’m not drunk, I’ve still got my shoes and jacket. I’m not drunk, I can walk in a straight line and I know my name.” I don’t understand people who get drunk to the point of losing their shit (or taking a shit in the street) and are just a mess. You know the kind. Everyone knows someone who is all “OH MY GOD I WAS SO DRUNK LAST NIGHT. I DON’T EVEN REMEMBER. ALCOHOL ALCOHOL ALCOHOL.” We all know them, and we probably want to punch them. Or maybe it is just me. I don’t need to drink my weight in wine to wake up with a migraine, it happens most days. Go read a book yo. Anyway, you get this feeling after a certain point. Maybe it is boredom, or maybe it is the desire to just go home and sleep. Or maybe you know there is more to life than this. Bands can sum up this feeling for you. A song can.
I’ve found Cold Cave are the band that do this for me, but this evening I found another band.
Virginia Plain are a Brooklyn based band that sum up this feeling extremely well. There is a word for it, but I’m obviously struggling to find out what the hell it is. Maybe it is boredom. Modern life is a bore. I don’t understand Iphones, Kindles and the point of Instagram. Your photo was taken two fucking seconds ago- IT ISN’T FUCKING VINTAGE. It just pisses me off a lot. I’ve got rage towards it. But I’m the only one who holds this view, so I’m led to believe I cannot vocalise it to anyone. So I don’t. Instead, I’m called various names. I’ve learnt to never say a word to anyone. Fuck it.
So Virginia Plain. They have this classical feel to(I said classical, not vintage fool.) Alfra has a classical voice that sounds so delicate over a dark synth based sound. I think this is one of my weaknesses in life. Described as “Horror-Disco” seems pretty fitting to be honest. They’ll make you want to dance, but in some parts you’ll be scared half to death. Only have. Half death, half lust for life. Possibly. Depends on what kind of disposition you have, I guess.
I’ll just get straight to the point- they’re also from Brooklyn/based there. It seems like anything from BK (look, if Foxy Brown can call it BK so can I. I love Foxy) is pretty incredible. A lot of what I listen to seems to be from there and the West Coast. In my mind this all means “OLIVIA GET THE FUCK OUT OF ENGLAND NOW..GO TO AMERICA.” I am trying, but as ever I guess- I’m not trying hard enough. Brooklyn doesn’t have a specific sound, it just has the ability to produce music that actually means something. Songs that make that crippling feeling at 3am fade away. Songs that make the days less dull. They shake all that loneliness you sometimes feel with something strong enough to give you hope. Maybe I’m being far too cheerful for my own good right now, but that’s my take on it.
Swamp Thing is my favourite track. Hang on actually, it is one of my favourite tracks of the year. I’ve had it on repeat for the past half hour. I don’t want to listen to anything else. You know Sheffield’s finest (and no more..sadly) The Long Blondes? Do you remember Kate Jackson’s clear, crisp and sensual voice? Alfra is EXACTLY the same. A sense of nostalgia is poured all over you as you listen to this song. They remind me so so much of Cold Cave. I love them. I just adore Swamp Thing. I want it playing all the time, it seems nothing else is going to make me happy the rest of the evening so I’ll have it on constant repeat. I want you to do the same so please listen to it here: http://virginiaplain.bandcamp.com/track/swamp-thing
They make you feel as if you are part of an unknown world. Listening to them is a sacred experience. It is a secret. You don’t know if you want to share this moment with anyone. I was torn about writing about them because I thought “I want this band for my own.” Then I realised the whole point of what I do is to give YOU (whoever you may be) some brilliant new bands to fall in love with. This is evidently love at first listen, and has now possibly turned into another obsession that I’ll refuse to shake.
I can only hope they come to the UK. I’d love to see them in some dark dark cave like club, no barrier between you and them, the synths taking over you and sweat pouring out of you. Maybe your own, maybe not. It doesn’t matter. This band will make you feel alive. This band will shake the 3am dread. This band is one of the best things to have happened this year. If not THE best thing to have happened this year.