Friday, 18 September 2020


Such Small HandsCarousel, the debut album from Such Small Hands, is released today ... and it's wonderful.

Such Small Hands is, as I may have mentioned here before, Melanie Howard, bassist with The Wedding Present. But don't expect her album to sound anything like her Gedge-based day-job. For Carousel is a collection of delicate melancholia, all minor-keys and gentle arrangements. Mel describes her sound thus: "Taking in influences including Bjork, Portishead, Chelsea Wolfe, Sharon Van Etten, Anna Calvi and Joni Mitchell, Such Small Hands blends dark pop with twinges of quirky folk and electronica" ... to that list, I would add that there's something about Mel's beautiful, slightly breath-y, layered vocals that reminds me of 90s 4AD darlings Lush - this is a good thing.

It's also quite filmic and is easy to imagine many (most?) of these tracks in soundtrack use. I also cannot wait to take these songs out on a lone, late-night drive: just clear, starry skies, empty roads and Carousel on repeat play. A potentially perfect combo.

Here's a track that's fairly representative of the album as a whole - track 3, Drifter:

Carousel by Such Small Hands

I know there are three months to go, but I'm calling this as my album of the year already - it's an incredible, delicate, beautiful thing, and listening to it feels like holding a ebon butterfly in cupped hands.

How about you, like what you've heard? Then hurry along to Mel's Such Small Hands Bandcamp page where a whole host of delights awaits. You can thank me later.

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