Having spent the last few weeks in the wake of Brexit, HAARM have been preoccupied, thinking about the new world we live in and how their first single Foxglove’s themes seem more pertinent than ever. “Lyrically it’s about feeling disenchanted with the current political climate, and existing social imbalances, something that feels even more relevant after the events of the past few weeks,” says vocalist Sophie. “Chris initially had the bass idea with this backing vocal hook which I instantly loved. We all worked together on the chorus, chords and lyrics – around a piano in the studio – and it all came together really easily, which I think is always a good sign.”
The video is an aesthetic treat, borrowing visuals from Peter Greenaway’s 1985 film A Zed & Two Noughts and directed by fashion photographer Peter Michael. While their sound is dedicated to the twin causes of melodies and dizzying bass lines, their versatility marks out the band; ranging over a toe dip of psychedelic but accessible indie rock and a sumptuous knack for politicised lyrics and spaced out visuals.
“I’d been reading a lot about the language of flowers and how in Victorian England people would use flowers to send each other coded messages. We kind of ran with this concept for Foxglove as it can symbolise either an insincerity, or a wish, which we felt summed up the lyrical theme perfectly,” she explains. “We probably won’t assign every song we write a flower name, but we definitely like the idea of keeping flowers as strong part of our aesthetic.”
Hailing from Liverpool, the band was formed after its three musicians came together to write songs for other artists.
“We bumped into each other on a night out last year and I suggested we should get together and do some songwriting – so we did. Along with Olly (drums) and Rob (producer), who we have all individually worked with previously.”
Recognising their innate chemistry, the trio soon surged ahead, and in their wake, they spawned a series of fans. None more recognisable than Hollywood actress Chloe Grace Moretz. While the band get tops marks for understatement, with little known about them at this point, they’ve opted for a fantastic introduction in the shape of their first single. Balancing the heady fulsomness with the plaintive freewheeling rhythmic propulsion and the male / female dual tracked vocals – when combined they put bands like The XX to shame. While indie rock is a difficult genre to reinvent, with lyrics about a political climate, and the country’s newly found obsession with feeling like it’s on the brink of an apocalyptic melt down, the band have a modest target audience to aim at. Which begs the question, when will the album be released?
“It’s still early days so we’re just writing and recording a lot at the moment, but I think the album is shaping up to be really eclectic theme wise. Even the more “traditional” themes such as relationships seem to be approached from a new perspective. I think everyone in the band wears their hearts on their sleeves a bit, so naturally, there is an honesty that comes through in the songwriting.”
HAARM is the result of three like-minded individuals unifying to mastermind their own project, whose first track is a suitably entertaining, pop-rock fare that has occasional moments of The Stone Roses. Generally speaking – it’s all about their undimmed earworms and Foxglove certainly gathers momentum, accreting a fantastic debut.
All that’s left now, is to watch this space and wait for the anticipated debut album – and in this instace, we’re sure it’s going to be worth the wait.