By Lillie Esme Bell
Last year they supported Peace at a small, free gig in Portsmouth, signed to the upcoming indie label Transgressive,’s cousin label ParadYse and just this month they received their first Radio 1 play on Huw Stevens Wednesday night show, as well as announcing their first UK headline tour. Who are they you may ask? They go by the name of Blaenovan, as in the small Welsh town, although, they aren’t even from Wales. Hailing from Hampshire, they are a three-piece consisting of, Ben Gregory, Frank Wright and Harris McMillan. They claim their major influences are The Proclaimers “(before they got shit)”, Joy Division and Wild Beasts, among others.
Still in their teens, they are already fashioning an effortless style that most bands strive to make. Their music, could be placed somewhere between that of Foals‘ earlier and The Maccabees later sounds. Debut single ‘Into The Night’ (released March 11th) screamed with confidence and along with Gregory’s deep vocals and impressive execution, they demonstrate that of a poetic flare; linking nature and love in a modern romanticism way. Adding this altogether creates such maturity, so much so that if you took a guess, you’d expect them to be at least early twenties! The single’s B-side, ‘Denim Patches’, too pulled them away from most band’s their age and thrust them into a category filled of experienced and talented indie bands, with the skill of versatility, by slowing down and focusing on the deeper, melancholy lyrics that echo ‘wait for me’, but still maintaining that guitar dominant funk. One skill in particular that demonstrates they are one of the best young bands around, is their ability to revert to chorus from verse with such ease. Their music simply flows and its pretty damn groovy.
New song Prague taken from Blaenovan‘s debut ‘KOSO EP’ shares the same exuberance as ‘Into The Night’ and it’s lyrics are equally as vulnerable as ‘Denim Patches’; its dynamic, polished, a true indie-rock dream. I’m sure Blaenavon will be sticking around for some time
Blaenavon are due to release the KOSO EP on September 23rd via Transgressive Records.