Welcome to Bliss/Aquamarine - alternative, underground and indie music.


THE SPEED OF SOUND I'm Real 7"/download (BE Records Manchester)
The Speed of Sound have a long history in the UK underground. Formed in 1989 under the name The Blood Oranges, they were immersed in cassette culture and appeared on tapes as diverse as the indie pop compilation You Can't Be Loved Forever #2 released by Philip Ball of The Rileys and Feverfew to accompany his fanzine, and a compilation from the more experimental/eclectic Hypertonia World Enterprises label run by Jan R Bruun. The Speed of Sound have retained their firmly independent ethos under their current guise, stating that they "exist in spite of the Music Industry, rather than because of it, and speak from outside its grasping tentacles". Their latest release is in aid of The Pankhurst Trust, celebrating 100 years since UK women gained the vote, and raising awareness of issues that still have the potential to impact upon women today. I'm Real is told from the perspective of a woman who has ended up in an unhealthy relationship leaving her stifled and controlled, while I Don't Want Your Attentions addresses workplace sexual harassment. The single is limited to 250 hand-numbered copies, with a label design that cleverly combines the mod target with the purple, green and white of the Suffragette sash. I'm Real is spiky 1980s indie pop with a clanging guitar sound and an uncompromising punk attitude. I Don't Want Your Attentions also draws from the punkier end of 1980s indie pop, balancing strong melody with forceful noise; the piece is however just as much informed by hard-edged 1960s mod and also includes an intricate rock guitar solo, showing that this band have no intention of buying into restrictive rules about genre boundaries. Available at thespeedofsound.bandcamp.com as of 10th September 2018. More info on the Pankhurst Trust at www.pankhursttrust.org


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Text Kim Harten, 2018.