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It’s quite possibly the best news I’ve heard so far this year. An album from Plaitum is forthcoming. Constraint will arrive on 7 April. If last year’s single releases are anything to go by, this will be a beast of a record. Jagwa, LMHY and new single Ovation will all be present, but there is no place for the explosive Grace Hits, which dropped towards the end of 2016. “When listening to the album it’ll make sense as the rest of the tracks are more coherent with themselves,” Matt from Plaitum informs me. Although still very very young, Matt (Canham) and Abi (Dersiley) have been Plaitum for the best part of a decade. They first uploaded their tracks to BBC Introducing in 2011 and around 12 months later they impressed in our live room. We took them with us to Latitude in 2013. If I recall a chat with them from around that time, I think I’m right in saying that we have the Foo Fighters to thank for their very existence as a band. It was the fact that they were both set to attend to the same Foo Fighters concert that got Matt and Abi talking. They discovered that they had music in common, and now they are making some of the best new music imaginable. Music blog ‘The Line of Best Fit’ describes their sound as ‘a feral cloak that wraps itself around you, constricting around your mind and heart, leaving you utterly breathless.’ It’s all true. Plaitum will play a few shows to coincide with the release of Constraint. They’re hoping that one of these is in Suffolk, as am I. A second live session with us is also in the pipeline.
In our live room recently was Beccles based singer songwriter Leaone. His forthcoming Goldtooth EP is well worth a listen, with influences ranging from Johnny Cash to Lana Del Rey. Of the handful of gigs played to date, none have been in Beccles, but his hometown has shaped his music to an extent. “I live in the countryside in an attic. I just look out at fields. It’s quite a reclusive environment and it leads to some reflective songs I guess.” It’s all true. Goldtooth conjures up memories of Leaone’s grandfather and boasts an impressive video to go with it, featuring archive footage from a golden era of Formula One. Leaone previously played bass with a band called Bear, but now finds himself fronting an excellent band of his own. “Friends grew up and bought houses and had kids, but I can’t imagine doing anything else but music. It’s like a mental torment but I don’t know what I’d be like without it. It’s my therapy. It keeps me from going crazy. In the world we live in you are geared towards making money. Sometimes I feel that pressure, but every time I’ve had a proper job it hasn’t lasted very long. I don’t think I’ll stop with the music. It’s ingrained.”
Not long after Leaone departed from the live room, off beat indie band Fick as Fieves took up occupancy. Their arrival brought back memories of our seaside tour in the winter of 2010. Back then, the trio performed alongside Union Sound Set during our Aldeburgh leg at The Railway pub, which is just around the corner from where one part of the trio, guitarist and vocalist Harry (Campbell), resides. Fick as Fieves appeared to burst onto the Suffolk and Essex music scene, performing with plenty of swagger in and around Ipswich and Colchester. But in all too short a space of time they were no more. Members were split between college and university before reforming again, and sending new material our way last year. “We had a great community around us and we’ve now got back in touch with so many people who were guiding us at a young age, like Shirley from the Railway,” bassist and vocalist Archie (Arthur) says. Harry, Archie and drummer Richard (Aries) regularly perform in Harry’s basement and have filmed a number of their live takes, which are doing the rounds on youtube and social media. They appear to be a band full of focus at present and free of distraction. So much so, that they only had time to perform one track for us from their current EP, 8 hours (so called because that’s how long it took to make), before moving on to newer material, which was even more impressive. It’s all true. Fick as Fieves supported RedFaces recently at the John Peel Centre, and will play Maui Waui in Theberton this summer along with a couple of other festivals.