With it getting really hot out, I should probably be listening to something gentle or something that makes me feel like I’m drinking a Whisky Sour on the beach somewhere. I’m not that kind of person really so I’m obviously going to write about someone who makes beautifully dark and twisted music. The best kind.
Bristol is home of some excellent bands 2:54 grew up there, Candy Darling, Spectres and Oh,The Guilt to name a few. I’ve named ones I’m a huge fan of, and to add to that list is Many Monika. Within the first minute of listening to Many Monika I thought of one band-Sparks. Sparks were a band that were a massive part of my childhood, so to hear someone sound just a little like them is always going to win me over. Despite how it comes across, I’m not completely fickle or easily swayed. Too stubborn, but I always listen. Even if I’m looking the other way. Anyway, we move on.
As I’m somewhat hit and miss with how I describe music, here are Sean’s words on what Many Monika is about: “I play music influenced by Velvet Underground and Placebo but there’s a slight twist in that I’m actually a guy but I make the music as a woman and it actually sounds a lot like a woman too.”
When Sean hits those high notes over this divine lo-fi sound, it just sounds like a clash of everything I love. Part of me thinks that this is what Kate Bush would sound like if she made a Garage Rock record.
The songs are heavy, dark and they make you feel as if you’re strutting around alleyways when you really shouldn’t. You’re Too Humble reminds me so much of Sally Can’t Dance and I’m Waiting For The Man by Velvet Underground. It’s got this feel of classy smuttiness throughout, and let’s be honest-some of the best songs ever written have that feel. It feels like a Marquis De Sade tale, and that’s perfectly fine by me. The core of all things I love are partially twisted and a bit strange, and I think Many Monika sum this up brilliantly. Casting gender aside, I’m in awe of the high notes. Man, woman and all in between- I’m in awe of how high they are and it isn’t done in an overbearing way. It’s so so cool, and I’m again annoyed I have no musical talent.
There’s this underlying attitude in the songs that make you feel as if you’re walking down the street with Holly Woodlawn on one side of you, and Lou Reed on the other circa 1972 on a hot summer day in New York City. You’re anywhere but where you are when you listen to Many Monika, and that’s all part of the charm. Many Monika are really unlike anything else I’ve heard in a long time. There’s something so appealing about their music that just keeps you hooked. Bristol is evidently home of some fantastic musicians, and Many Monika are up there with them. These are the kinds of songs some lost kid stuck in a dead-end town needs to hear, as a push towards getting out. You can, and will get out. Hell..if I can- anyone can! Pick some songs, pack a bag and get out.
Many Monika’s music is a journey through the things were are a bit too timid to go near, but the music gives you courage and before you know it- you’re right there.
You can listen to some of their sounds right here: https://manymonika.bandcamp.com/releases
Many Monika will be playing at the Trinity Garden Party this Sunday at 3:45pm. Sean also has his own night (called DIVE) at Crofters Rights, the next one being 30th May.