| A wrecking ball of a fierce panda one sheet
The Act: DESPERATE JOURNALIST
The Release: 'DESPERATE JOURNALIST'
The Formats: VINYL / CD / DIGITAL ALBUM
The Label: fierce panda records
The Release Dates: DIGITAL NOVEMBER 3RD 2014 / PHYSICAL JANUARY 26TH 2015
The Tracklisting: 1 'Control'; 2 'O'; 3 'Cristina'; 4 'Hesitate'; 5 'Remainder'; 6 'Distance'; 7 'Nothing'; 8 'Happening'; 9 'Eulogy'; 10 'Heartbeats'; 11 'Cement'
The Truth: Desperate Journalist consist of two girls and two boys who have bonded in the abandoned wilds of North London. Jo Bevan (vocals), Simon Drowner (bass), Rob Hardy (guitar) and Caz Hellbent (drums) - for 'tis they – have been hauled together by a fearsome instinct for what makes alternative music actually really properly authentically alternative.
They started their journey at the local Negative Creep grunge club night in Finsbury Park on February 23rd 2013. Since those heady, dark days Desperate Journalist have released one EP and two heroically independent singles and played every other shadowy basement in London Town, displaying a bold musical vigour and an admirably chaotic sense of coherence along the way.
Now comes the heroically independent debut album, ‘Desperate Journalist’ by Desperate Journalist, which was recorded almost entirely live in Soho’s Dean Street Studios, jointly produced alongside Keith TOTP and mixed by the band itself. If that wasn’t organic enough Desperate Journalist designed their own artwork, get heavily involved in their videos and generally hark back to a time when an authentic DIY spirit pervaded, like a perfect indierock storm brewing on the horizon.
Strung out together the eleven album tracks prove that there is something terrifically passionate and uncontrived about Desperate Journalist: as previous singles 'Cristina', 'Organ' and ‘Happening’ suggested there is towering, glowering joy to be found in the combination of Rob Hardy’s 12-string guitar sparklings and Jo Bevan’s strident vocals, and they revealed a leftfield band not afraid of giving their punchy blend of melody and melodrama a great big gothic grapple.
The super spontaneous Halloween digital launch for ‘Desperate Journalist’ is no coincidence: this is a merciful release wherein brooding basslines and bruised melodies underpin songs of vehemence and menace, played by a band who are happily appearing live on the fringes of the Whitby Goth Weekender. “We have in a way a gothic sensibility when it comes to writing songs in that we try to be as evocative and exciting as possible,” they muse. “But we’re more in tune with the directness of the punk / indie side of it all (Southern Death Cult, The Sound, Siouxsie, The Cure), rather than the full on velvet and lace of, say Nephilim.”
This much is true: you may well have observed that all the ‘Desperate Journalist’ songs have one word – and in the extremely minimal case of ‘O’, one letter - titles. It matches the compositions themselves, which are snappy. Sharp. Sassy. Sussed. And these are the kinds of things which set Desperate Journalist apart from the maddening masses, because this music is made by people who intelligently channel the essence of their influences rather than simply wear their t-shirts.
Unsurprisingly Desperate Journalist have already gone down searingly well with real life ex-desperate journo Steve Lamacq on BBC 6 Music. Other laptop-tapping enthusiasts of the Desperate Journalist sound lurk at Artrocker (“Powerful, melodic and full of emotion.”), Time Out (“Shimmering post-punk.”) and The Quietus ("Thoroughly ace."). Go check some of that powerful melodic shimmering aceness at these gigs here...
OCTOBER 30TH NOTTINGHAM Spanky Van Dyke’s
OCTOBER 31ST SHEFFIELD Rocking Chair
NOVEMBER 1ST WHITBY The Resolution (Gothic Weekender Fringe)
NOVEMBER 21ST LINCOLN The Scene
NOVEMBER 22ND BIRMINGHAM Actress & Bishop
NOVEMBER 27TH LONDON Buffalo Bar
DECEMBER 13TH NOTTINGHAM The Chameleon