Male Bonding Release Debut LP, Nothing Hurts on Sub Pop, May 11th
Male Bonding Biography
Male Bonding is a noise-pop trio from Daltson, UK, a London suburb with a budding D.I.Y. scene, who fuse elements of garage/indie-rock guitars, punk sensibility, surf influences and the most important aspect to their originality, speed. Yes, Male Bonding’s sound is highly melodic, filled with all the necessary hooks to bounce around in your cranium, all the while, kicking it up a notch.
The band, consisting of John Arthur Webb, on guitars and vocals, Kevin Hendrick, on bass and vocals and Robin Silas Christian, on drums, have been at it for the past two years. They have been touring relentlessly around Europe and North America and penning a name for themselves releasing split singles on Paradise Vendors and later Sub Pop Records, while winning over crowds with their up tempo, noisey and unforgettable stage performances. With that being said, Male Bonding is finally set to release their much anticipated first full length album, Nothing Hurts on Sub Pop Records.
Male Bonding’s First LP, Nothing Hurts
The album begins with the straight ahead, 2-chord, guitar driven, “Year’s Not Long,” which epitomizes the Male Bonding sound – melodic and captivatingly sped up – at times sounding like pre-Sire, Replacements and showcases Hendrick’s ability as a hooky rhythm section. The next couple of songs breeze by, each about 2 minutes long, like many of the songs on the album, but are equally as memorable.
But then we are introduced to other aspects of Male Bonding’s song writing. “Weird Feelings” introduces the listener to the 60’s surfer influences with a jangly guitar melody, while “Franklin,” shows off the bands slower and spacey side, fusing an almost Fleet Foxes-esque guitar tone during the verses and a Flamming Lips-like, flowing chorus drenched in echoic vocals.
Kevin Hendrick, Male Bonding Bassist"For hours, I would listen to all these rock songs, and I’d hear the bass line and was always wondering what it would sound like sped up. It appealed to me more."
Songs like “Crooked Rain” and “Pirate Key” are noisier than the first half of the album, but remain equally melodic and memorable showcasing a heavy, garage guitar sound from Webb and a pounding drum sound which carries the majority of the songs by Christian.
The standout track of the second side is “Pumpkin,” once again showing off the bands love for jangly, surfer riffs and loud melodies. The album concludes with “Worst to Come,” an acoustic number featuring The Vivian Girls, putting the finishing touches on an album spanning 13 songs and a half hour.
Male Bonding’s debut is nothing short of impressive. It is a unique sound internally contradicting itself with heavy and noisey guitars, with hooky bass lines and thunderous drums – a punk rock pedigree, while melding whimsical and dreamy vocal harmonies. Bassist Hendrick even stats in an interview, “There’s a hippie in me and it’s fighting with the inner punk.”