Midlands-based Drakelow are a band that we’ve hyped up before. Formerly known as The Young Runaways, the band are back now with a double A side charity single for Record Store Day. The two tracks are streaming over on the band’s Soundcloud. So here’s our verdict.
The first of the two A sides is an original track, ‘String’. The track opens in a tense fashion, with just a quiet guitar and the occasional burst of a louder electric guitar to set the scene. This build works perfectly, with a faint backwards guitars signalling the true start of the track. From there the song slowly builds to a slightly underwhelming first chorus. But don’t let that throw you off.
By the time the second chorus arrives, the song has somehow dug into a reserve of energy and excitement and managed to build further – transforming the chorus into a singalong stomper with a melody that will get into your head. Vocalist Matt Pinfield’s voice is on top form and this chorus demonstrates it wonderfully. This lift takes the track to a final section that brings everything slowly back down to an end. In all honesty I think it would have been nicer to see the band work another chorus in after the outro, but that’s not to say the way it ends is not good.
It leads perfectly into the next song, a cover of Red House Painters’ ‘Grace Cathedral Park’. It’s a predominately acoustic led song, with gentle floating backing vocals and harmonious keys. Combine this with the atmospheric strings that come in at the midpoint and it’s difficult not to like this song. It’s a cover version that expands on the original and adds depth to every aspect of the song, from vocal delivery to instrumentation. And these are always worth looking into.
It’s a good release from Drakelow. Perhaps not quite up to the standard as their earlier material as Young Runaways, but definitely worth checking out and – especially since it’s for charity – worth buying on Record Store Day.
You can listen to the tracks here.