The name may conjure up smoky wood panelled rooms and hushed conversations, or loafing around on hazy Sundays, yet this lot couldn’t be further from that imagery if they tried. Lounge Society hail from Hebden Bridge and Todmorden and are the latest band to emerge on the wonderful Speedy Wunderground label.

Not fitting in and outsider culture permeates the album throughout, opener ‘People Are Scary’ has vocalist/ bassist Cameron Davey musing “When will I feel comfortable around other people” against a backdrop of frenetic guitar bursts before melting into a mantra of ” well I don’t know anybody in this room, and nobody knows me in this room”, it sums up the musically out of place existence of The Lounge Society. A jagged indie guitar band nestling nicely between punk’s disaffection, art rock’s awkward swagger and pop’s melodic impetus. 

If I had to give it a genre, which is always quite a limiting thing to do to a band I know but kind of helps other ears get a grasp of their musical realm, I’d go for post punk. Although these days, a lot of artists genre hop with such fluidity it’s like musical plasticine, stretching the outer limits of each genre, smashing the lumps together to form something bold and new, so it is with this lot.

‘Beneath The Screen’ is like being beneath the screen of an adrenalin fuelled action film as the main car chase or fight scene takes place, a full-on edgy experience but one that leaves you thoroughly immersed and keen for the next sequence. Thankfully ‘North Is Your Heart’ provides some short respite with a gentle (well as gentle as this lot get) opening gambit, before the fast-paced roller coaster takes off for the next ride, with guitars and drums that soar and loop, delivering excitement to your eardrums. It takes me back to the first time I ever herd Slint, the jarring exciting combination of a spoken word story riding high above a calm melodic sea of instrumentation, before surfing back to shore with a hefty chorus. 

There’s an intensity to Davey’s vocals matched to the sharp guitar lines, when he sings “I will spend my last breath singing” on ‘Last Breath’ ‘you’re inclined to believe it. This lot always manage to balance the dramatic with the melodic and for all of ‘Last Breath’s urgency, the respite comes swiftly following with ‘Remains’ finding the band tunefully kicking the walls down with a mountainous freak out towards the end, it’s like they’ve ingested Sonic Youth, The Fall and Fugazi fed them through a Gang Of Four food blender.  If there was any justice in the world it would be belted out anthemic style by music lovers around the globe, although I suspect they’s probably cringe at the thought. They’ve accidentally written a leftfield guitar pop banger! 

Just the name ‘Generation Game’ takes me back to Saturday night telly as a kid, however there’s no mention of Bruce or Larry to be found here. Instead we find Davey delivering his thoughts on future world affairs and the mess we’re in now stating “There’s a generation staring down the barrel of a gun, but you will never find them in the cover of The Sun” culminating in a rabble rousing chorus of “What will the U.S. do” before melting into a Doors-esque mind warp of gentle floating psychedelia as the palpable anger rises to the surface,  before bursting through again for a final flourish in the last highly charged chorus. 

The Lounge Society’s debut is a raw, untamed blast of guitar mayhem scattered with some mighty fine melodies amongst the adrenaline rush of their tunes. A startlingly brilliant debut.

The Lounge Society – Tired Of Liberty – Out Now (Speedy Wunderground)

From the early days of creating handmade zines, in a DIY paper and glue style, interviewing bands around town, then pestering Piccadilly Records to sell them, to writing for various independent mags such as Chimp and Ablaze, writing about the music I love is still a great passion. After testing the music industry waters in London with stints at various labels, being back in my hometown again, writing about this city’s vibrant music scene is as exciting as ever. All time favourite bands include Sonic Youth, Nick Cave, Patti Smith although anything from electro to folk via blues and pysch rock will also do nicely too. A great album, is simply a great album, regardless of whatever musical cage you put it in.