Charly Bliss' debut album Guppy is one of the coolest, most exciting things I have heard in a very long time (if you don't believe me, hear their cover of Len's "Steal My Sunshine" and then let's talk). In 2017, rock music that genuinely grabs the listener and offers something different is rare, and the proudly "pop-influenced" Brooklyn four-piece, fortunately, are here to be one of a few much-needed plugs for that gap.
As a self-confessed devotee of pop-rock sound present in the soundtracks of teen movies from the late 90s and early 2000s, when I was introduced to the band I immediately gravitated towards their bouncy, girl-led sound. It feels just like it could soundtrack the opening credits of a film about a rebellious rich girl who falls in love with a soulful boy from the wrong side of the tracks or something. So it makes sense that the band's newest music video, for Guppy cut "DQ" – premiering up top today on Noisey – would also have the same sensibility, only a little more madcap, as is befitting their sound.
When I chatted with frontwoman Eva Hendricks (who, along with Sheer Mag's Tina Halliday, is one of the best vocalists doing the damn thing in rock right now), she told me: "I think we often naturally veer towards that kind of campy, fun feeling for our music and videos," and that's pretty clear – here we have Eva in a cheerleader-esque get-up, a pool party, and, uh, a dead dog. Were they going for that teen movie feel?
"I wanted the video to match the energy of 'DQ', but also sort of correspond with that idea of being too old and too young at the same time," Eva says. "We shot the video in our hometown in Westport, Connecticut mostly at our parents' houses. I wanted us to seem like weird overgrown townies! The video is a pretty literal interpretation of the lyrics, and therefore, a great excuse to get to hang out with a lot of cows."
Eva, who is a woman of many talents, also wrote and directed the music video: "This was my first time writing a treatment and co-directing a video, which sort of happened by accident," she tells me. "Like I said before, I'm so attached to the lyrics of this song and I always sort of had a picture in my head of what the song looks like. I tried to just create that world for the video." Most importantly, I am moved to ask: is the dog OK? "The dog – Wicket – is absolutely OK! He's just an amazing actor who is clearly dedicated to his craft – he was just lying down in the first shot." Thank God.
But the "DQ" video isn't all the band have up their considerably large sleeves: they're also announcing a special Charly Bliss comic book – "Guppy, Issue 1" which features artistic interpretations of each of the tracks on Guppy. It'll be accompanied by a flexi-disc featuring two new songs, "Golden Age," and "Special," and is sure to be just as vivid and imaginative as everything else the band put their name to – you can pre-order it here.
Charly Bliss will be touring the UK next month. Here's where you can catch them:
9/12 – Cardiff, UK – Clwb iFor Bach
9/13 – London, UK – The Old Blue Last
9/14 – London, UK – The Garage (with Chastity Belt)
9/15 – Liverpool, UK – Studio 2
9/16 – Leeds, UK – Headrow House
9/17 – Glasgow, UK – Hug & Pint
9/19 – Manchester, UK – The Eagle Inn
9/20 – Birmingham, UK – The Sunflower Lounge
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