Dead to Me

Girls Names


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2011, Slumberland Records

Forming in Belfast in January 2009, Cathal Cully and Neil Brogan booked their first gig as Girls Names before they'd even played together, expanding to a three-piece some months later with the addition of Claire Miskimmin on bass. Although still in their infancy, Girls Names has refined their take on the early/mid-'80s shadow world of Black Tambourine, Felt and the Sound of Young Scotland on a series of releases: a 12-inch on Captured Tracks, an eight-track mini-album on Tough Love and a split 7-inch with San Francisco's Brilliant Colors on Slumberland.

With their identity firmly established, debut album Dead to Me is the next step forward and solidly delivers on the promise shown on previous releases. The song writing is more defined and the production values have been sharpened, representing a definitive break from the nonsensical lo-fi tag that has lazily followed them around by association.

The band entered the studio in the last half of 2010 with the conscious desire to make an old-fashioned pop album, albeit one with a perverse haunted feel. The ten tracks that comprise Dead to Me are possessed with a warm, classic quality derived second-hand from the '60s influenced bands of the '80s. The songs "When You Cry," "Bury Me" and "I Lose" are characterized by a timeless melodicism that's long been the reserve of pop classicists from the Walker Brothers to Orange Juice, while others such as "Séance on a Wet Afternoon" reveal a darker undercurrent. And in an oblique manner, ghosts are also integral to the lyrical themes of the record. Whoever the protagonist of the title is meant to be, his or her specter lingers throughout Dead to Me, lurking under the gloom of reverb-heavy guitars and subdued bittersweet vignettes charged on bloody nostalgia, bad romance and a fascination with the occult.

Tracklisting

Disc 1
1 Lawrence
2 I Could Die
3 When You Cry
4 No More Words
5 Nothing More to Say
6 I Lose
7 Cut Up
8 Bury Me
9 Kiss Goodbye
10 STance On a Wet Afternoon



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