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The UK’s relentless charge of outstanding new guitar acts shows no sign of stopping with the introduction of head-spinningly great Colchester four-piece Anorak Patch.
The quartet, consisting of vocalist and keyboard player Effie Lawrence, bassist Eleanor Halliwell, guitar player Oscar Ryland, and drummer Luca Ryland, possess serious beyond their youthful years.
They quickly burst onto the scene after forming in late 2019, and impressed with seriously catchy, Blur-esque single Beans and the equally brilliant 6 Week Party in 2020.
But latest single Irate showcases an act unafraid to change direction. It's a slice of brooding, scuzzy rock reminiscent of early Queens of the Stone Age, encapsulating the impact the first lockdown had on everyday lives.
It was premiered by Steve Lamacq on his 6 Music show in January – a major stamp of approval for any emerging act.
The teenage high school pals are signed to tastemaker label Nice Swan Records, too, home to the likes of Sports Team, Pip Blom, Courting, Hotel Lux and FUR.
And with slots at The Great Escape and Farmfest pencilled in later this year, 2021 is on course to be a special breakthrough year for Anorak Patch. Remember the name.
Daily Star Online’s Rory McKeown caught up with Eleanor to find out more about their influences, how they’ve navigated lockdown, and their life in a band so far.
Hi guys. Tell me more about Anorak Patch. How and when did you form?
“We’re Eleanor Halliwell, Luca Ryland, Effie Lawrence and Oscar Ryland.
“We’ve been a band for nearly two years and we are based in Essex. We knew each other before the band was formed through going to gigs together and being at the same school. We’d go to gigs almost every week it seemed only fitting that we started a band ourselves.”
You’ve just released the single Irate. What was its writing and recording process like?
“Irate was written in the first lockdown. It’s about how we felt at that time and how frustrated we were about not being able to play gigs and record and everything else you have to do as a band.
“We recorded it with Tom Donovan in Rowhedge and the song really came together well.”
It follows the release of Beans and 6 Week Party. How pleased are you with the reaction those tracks have received?
“We are very happy at the support and response to both songs. It’s so great to hear feedback as it helps us develop our sound.”
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How have you found lockdown? What’s it like navigating it as a band?
“It’s been difficult to keep people interested but with our fab team I think we’ve coped well. We kept spirits high by communicating as much as possible.”
Who are your influences?
“Our music, although very broad, is influenced by bands like Squid and Talking Heads. It fuses all our different favourite types of music.”
You’re also based in Colchester. What’s the scene like there? How has it moulded you as a band?
“Before lockdown there was a lovely group of young bands and musicians which made the scene very welcoming. And gigs very enjoyable.”
You’re signed to exciting independent label Nice Swan Records, home to the likes of Sports Team, Pip Blom, Hotel Lux, Courting and FUR. What’s it like to have their backing?
“We are so excited to be working with Nice Swan. It’s very reassuring that artist we know and like have worked with them before too.”
Legendary DJ Steve Lamacq gave Irate a spin on his 6 Music show. That must have been an incredible moment for you…
“We are still getting used to hearing our songs on the radio it’s so surreal. But we are so grateful for all radio play.”
You’re part of this incredibly exciting charge of young acts across the UK and Ireland right now. Are you fans of any other new acts right now?
“We are big fans of The Lounge Society and more locally we love Flip Top Head.”
You’re scheduled to play The Great Escape in May and Farmfest in July. How much are you looking forward to these shows?
“It’ll be so great to get back playing! We are so so excited to see everyone back at gigs and enjoy the live music.:
What can we expect next from Anorak Patch? Do you have an ultimate goal?
“We hope to get more new music out this year and I think I can speak for the whole band in saying that our goal is just enjoy making music for as long as possible.”
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