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Soot Sprite – ‘Poltergeists’

EP Recorded at No Luck Audio.
Label – Specialist Subject Records.

It might be a slightly delayed piece about this particular release from last year (due to not having a dedicated space for our reviews back then), but we simply could not pass up the opportunity to talk about Soot Sprite’s latest record.
Released through Specialist Subject Records, ‘Poltergeists’ is the third EP from the local trio.

We originally reviewed the band’s first release, ‘Comfort in Concrete’, in early 2019 in issue one of our print publication, this was near the beginning of Soot Sprite’s formation when it solely consisted of Elise Cook. The band has now grown, both in terms of members (now into a trio), but also with the maturity of their sound. Alongside, Elise on guitar and lead vocals, the band includes, Sean Mariner with bass /backing vocals and on drums is Tom Gilbert.
A very much overdue Uncovered update from one of the finest local groups we have become extremely fond of with each new release.

‘Poltergeists’ sees the local trio at their most cohesive as a band thus far. With each release, the level of their musicianship and songwriting has heightened and it’s a true delight to hear. A six-track EP takes us on a range of relatable emotions, with Cook’s signature vocal style shining through with each note.

For us, the stand out track is a rather difficult one to pinpoint, as this is such a wonderfully complete EP, with not a single skippable single. But for this piece, we have chosen, ‘Assisted Thrills’. The way that it kicks off the record in the most flawless way, shows Soot Sprite at its absolute best.

The initial heavy picking of the lead guitar, (which continues intermittently during the track), has such a delightfully unique sound, alongside the perfect percussion from Tom Gilbert, of course, then add in those incredibly distinctive vocals and we not only have the best this band have sounded thus far, but instantaneously we are aware that this is a Soot Sprite record.

“If I’m assisted thrills does my voice give you the chills”.

‘Assisted Thrills’
Soot Sprite – ‘PoltergePoltergeists’ EP artwork

We were keen to include a track by track of the EP in this piece from Soot Sprite’s very own Elise Cook, alongside the review. It always adds a different dimension to the piece when hearing from the band themselves, in one form or another.


POLTERGEISTS TRACK BY TRACK

Assisted Thrills

It’s about entering a relationship with someone that doesn’t care about you and about not having the experience to realise that your self-worth doesn’t revolve around how others treat you, and all the anxiety and crippling self-doubt those relationships can bring you.

Accolade

This song was written about that gooey teenage feeling you get when you meet someone new, and how the excitement of that can make you miss all the red flags. That all-consuming feeling can make you lose focus on everything except making that person want you more.

It’s Summer And I Don’t Feel Like Smiling

It’s about that stage in recognising your mental health stretches beyond SAD, and the dread and depression we all experienced during the pandemic. Although it was mostly written the previous year, it all came together in that weird collective mental state of 2020 (and 2021).

Night Thirst

I wrote this towards the end of a relationship just before the first lockdown, and how it made me feel like the problem was with myself and my own baggage and how I felt it would be difficult for someone to love me. I blamed myself and not my emotionally manipulative partner. And it made me feel incredibly alone. 

Alone Not Lonely

This was one of those epiphany moments, where I realised that alone I was not just okay but I was thriving, and it wasn’t down to anyone else except myself. It was that realisation of self-love and owning my accomplishments in life, that came out in this form of pure joy that I needed to put into song.

Poltergeists 

This was maybe that point we all reached during the lockdown where no one was themselves anymore and every day just felt the same and looking at the walls and reminders on social media of the life I was living up until before that point, and how it felt like being haunted by a life I wasn’t sure we would be able to return to.


It was fantastic to hear the inspiration behind the EP on the songwriting front. It’ll be brilliant to hear what will unfold next for this wonderful trio and we certainly look forward to featuring Soot Sprite much more in the future on Exeter Uncovered.

https://linktr.ee/Sootsprite

*Feature image captured by – Tavis Amosford.

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Exeter Uncovered’s Ones To Watch: False Worth

We are incredibly fortunate to have extreme diversity within the range of genres from our local music community. And that continues to be the case with each great new artist/band that happens to form in the area.
This undoubtedly includes False Worth, a five-piece formed in 2020, with their debut single released last month. Hence, why we’ve chosen them as the first band for this feature of our ones to watch.


‘Pessimist’ is a perfect dose of Pop-Punk and is also rather reminiscent of the golden years of emo that occurred during the early noughties.
Despite those musical influences still being apparent, the local quintet has unmistakably developed its sound in such a way that it retains a renewed and unique style.

False Worth ‘Pessimist’ single artwork

This consists of, Callum Griffin on vocals, Matthew Tiller and Sam Clifford-Harding both on guitar, Tyler Griffin on bass, plus Corey Partridge on drums. Despite this being their debut release, they already have a clear cohesiveness to their sound, which can be a tricky task for bands early in their career, but False Worth executes this especially well.

From the moment the single began, we were hooked, with both the lyricism and superb musicianship in equal measure. The true rawness behind the vocals (courtesy of Callum Griffin) instantly pulled us into the False Worth sound. There’s a whole host of lyrics that we could quote from ‘Pessimist’, but there’s one that stands out in particular from the chorus, which encapsulates the entirety of the track in one single line.

”I’ve got to pick myself up off of the floor, I’ve been here too many times before.”

False Worth’s debut single ‘Pessimist’ available on Spotify

They might have only released the one single thus far, but that didn’t prevent False Worth from making their debut show one to remember.
The Exeter band supported Exeter Uncovered favourites Pattern Pusher at Exeter Phoenix on April 1st, and from what we’ve heard their set was a fantastic way to kick off the start of their journey as an up and coming local band.

False Worth debut gig – Luka Chitty Photography
False Worth at Exeter Phoenix – Luka Chitty Photography
False Worth at Exeter Phoenix – Luka Chitty Photography

We had a brief chat with the five-piece about the inspiration behind their debut single and the news of their upcoming debut EP.

Q: We would love to hear more of an insight into the lyrical side of ‘Pessimist’ and how that all came together.

A: The lyrical side of Pessimist was collectively written by Matt and Corey. The song tells the story of someone that is trapped or stuck in a situation or place. They constantly feel that there is no way out and they are always pessimistic about their future. Their thought process is always the negative outcome, over the possibility of something positive. They walk around in constant fear that people judge them, or if they’d remember them when they’re gone. Making changes for a better future is going to be tough, but this has to happen and they’re ready for it. Cal executed the vocals better than we had ever imagined, he took them to another level and captured the raw feel that these words needed projecting. Everyone’s situation is different and we hope that listeners can take the lyrics used in Pessimist and relate with their own experiences. We wanted to write true, genuine lyrics with a visceral feel.

Q: Which artists gave you all the initial push to form False Worth? Are there any significant inspirations?

A: Our significant inspiration comes from bands like The Story So Far, Green Day, Title Fight and Knuckle Puck. We all listen to a variety of bands within the Pop-Punk/Post-Hardcore and Hardcore genres from different eras. The album ‘20/20’ by Knuckle Puck was in fact the record that inspired Matt to start writing the original demos for the band.

Q: When will we get to hear new music and the follow-up to your debut single?

We are hoping our debut EP ‘A Myriad Of Issues’ will be released in July, this release will also include our first single ‘Pessimist’. Recording this EP has felt like a long process as it has been recorded in day sessions scattered over the period of 6 months, however, this has given us the time to review the tracks in-between those sessions to ultimately iron out the small and often overlooked elements of a shorter more intense recording process.

We’re very keen to hear this upcoming Summer EP, ‘A Myriad Of Issues’ from our first band in the ‘Ones To Watch’ feature. We also look forward to sharing our review of the debut around the time of release in July.

https://linktr.ee/falseworth

*Feature image: Martin Balman

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Hello Again!

I’ve truly missed being connected to the music community and proudly shining that light upon the most exceptional of artists.

I initially pondered on the fact that there weren’t any dedicated Exeter music magazines back in the Summer of 2018 and I was instantly eager to do something about it in the hopes to help support local musicians through that journey. My first piece for issue one was covering a Skindred concert at The Lemon Grove. Nerve-wracking to say the least!

Skindred at The Lemon Grove, Exeter

Unfortunately, my chronic health conditions have majorly held me back from progressing with this publication in the way I had hoped. After creating the first three issues of the magazine in early 2019, I became completely bed-bound due to a deterioration in my health. As I write this, my health is unfortunately at an all-time low, hence the complete radio silence from this platform.

Despite this, I’m very eager (when I feel well enough to type) to restart on the Exeter Uncovered journey, even if that’s simply posting the occasional review and hopefully some interviews mixed in also.

I learnt such an awful lot through the process of creating a print magazine from scratch, juggling being the editor, head photographer and journalist, with only a couple of guest sections. In theory, delegating some work where possible would have been much better for my health but isn’t hindsight a wonderful thing.

I very much hope that next year Exeter Uncovered 2.0 might grow into a new look print publication, but, that’s dependent on many things along the way.

In the meantime, here’s to simply having a dedicated space for it online again.