The Lounge Society are a brazen new four-piece band hailing from the Pennine towns of Hebden Bridge and Todmorden in the Calder Valley of West Yorkshire. Made up of Cameron Davey (vocals/bass), Herbie May (guitar/bass), Hani Paskin-Hussain (guitar/bass) and Archie Dewis (drums), the band are signed to Dan Carey’s Speedy Wunderground label and their debut release in 2020 became the label’s fastest-selling 7” ever, and indeed its only repress since the indomitable black midi.
They may be in their mid-teens, yet the band exude such a confident demeanour – both in their music and in our zoom call with each member wearing sunshades indoors – that you’d think they’d been performing for decades. However, there’s no sneering sense of hedonism imbued with this confidence – far from it. “There’s something to be said for young musicians,” says Herbie, perhaps the most confident of the sunshade-indoor-adorned bunch during our chat. “There’s a sense of spirit. We always help each other out, we’re a bit of a unit and nothing gets in the way of that.”
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Inspired by the likes of Sylvia Plath and revered poets of the beat generation, The Lounge Society carry articulacy in abundance. “People like Ginsberg and Jack Kerouac, they were on such a scruffy, grubby level of consciousness that inspired some of the greatest art,” says Herbie. “Ginsberg said, ‘I am a victim of telephones,’ in 1957, and now we’re now all victims of telephones. These people could tell the future.”
Like their poetic admirations, the band vividly believe that the opportunity they have to make art should be used to talk about their views on the world today. Unafraid to tackle troubling subjects like the treatment of Muslims in China in ‘Generation Game’, there’s an admirable sense of self-assuredness that comes across in the band’s songwriting, stemming from their individual beliefs. “Religion aside, what they’re doing is not okay on a human level,” says Archie, before Hani adds that “if we weren’t expressing our thoughts and beliefs as a band, we’d probably be doing it some other way. This is just the way it’s happened.”
Releasing their debut material during the pandemic without being able to perform it live felt wholly unfamiliar to the band. But recording with go-to producer of the moment, Dan Carey, allowed them to distil their live energy into record format. Archie says: “for getting the best live recording we can, Dan’s studio was perfect for us. If we went in and recorded all the instruments separately it would never work. We’re a live band.”
The Lounge Society discovered and explored their creative identity among a supportive local music community. And with any supportive community, comes hope and optimism. “We wanna spread the word,” Herbie explains. “We’re not afraid to say that we wanna be successful. We’re always looking for new ways to say what we believe and opening new platforms for dialogue - it’s part of who we are.”
There’s a passion that’s incessant within The Lounge Society; youth and ambition have always been trademarks of successful bands within the music industry. Yet, you sometimes find a select few bands that give off an indefinable sheen of prominence and distinction that separates them from the burgeoning crowd. It may still be early days, but with mounting momentum behind them and an outspokenness that’s bold but not rash, keep a look out for that sheen that might just begin to glisten on the backs of The Lounge Society very soon.
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'Silk For The Starving' EP is out now.
Words: Jamie Wilde
Photo Credit: Piran Aston
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