1. White Horses
2. The Quiet Earth
1. The Quiet Earth (James Yuill Remix)
After releasing their acclaimed debut single "Microlite" in November along with playing their first ever live shows - including a string of successful support slots with the likes of Foals and Bombay Bicycle Club - Oxford trio Trophy Wife have announced their follow up AA single. "The Quiet Earth" / "White Horses" released on February 28th through Moshi Moshi Records and cements the band as a serious force to be reckoned with in 2011.
With propulsive beats, delicate vocals and whispering melodies, "The Quiet Earth" is another melancholic slice of Trophy Wife's "ambitionless office disco". The band's meticulous yet restrained production highlights the fragility of Jody Prewett's vocals against Kit Monteith's defiant drums and Ben Rimmer's echoing keys.
Backed by the majestic "White Horses", where glimmering vocals offset the stunning violin and sparse rhythms before pulsating bass lines melt into the track, the song documents the misplaced sense of clarity you feel just before a comedown, the simultaneous feelings of invincibility and vulnerability. Trophy Wife's new single delivers on the initial promise "Microlite" showed and hints at what the future holds for them.
The band's sound and aesthetic is informed by influences as diverse as Studio, Polmo Polpo, The Notwist, Hank Marvin and Tortoise. These influences can not only be heard in the band's music and production, but also echoed in their artwork, photography and videos - all facets of which the three band members contribute to equally.
It's songs like this that convince me that New York isn't all that cool, at least not as cool as the UK. I know our music scene gets given a lot of hassle and we haven't produced someone massive and great for a while, but the sheer number of amazing bands and people coming through now makes up for their lack of fame. No, we don't have great bands as big as Animal Collective or Deerhunter or even Toro y Moi I guess, but we have fucking loads of bands better than them waiting to become as big. We’ve got our prodigies in dubstep and post dubstep (James Blake, Becoming Real, Pariah) through to punk (Flats, Male Bonding, Graffiti Island). And now we have a new one to add to that expanding list, Trophy Wife.
I'm sure you've seen bits thrown up on this site recently about Trophy Wife, we've had an interview, an acoustic version of Microlite and a remix of Microlite go up to good response. And for good reason - 'Microlite' is one of the best new songs out there in a totally new genre. It's a song that takes what we could define loosely as 'indie' and breaks it down into its constituent parts, and makes it more intelligent, more subtle but still packing a punch. It's still the same almost throwaway lyrics that indie possesses, that somehow stick with you without saying a lot. It's the evolution of indie into post indie; this is to Franz Ferdinand what Gang Of Four were to The Sex Pistols.
And the B side Take This Night is just as strong, taking the same minimalist approach to its music. Think what Foals' second album should have been, rather than the bloated crap that it was. It's got the intelligent guitars, slowed down and full of movement, but it doesn't rely heavily on reverb or effects or Yannis' overinflated ego. Coincidentally, Yannis used to live next door to this lot, so that may not be as much of a coincidence as it sounds.
Anyway, I think the best thing to say about this is that it is important. Or, at least, with the right luck, it will be. It has the potential to be influential; it has the potential for a seminal, defining album. They have the potential to be your new favourite band if you’ll let them.