Thing of the Day
London's Rayographs release their anticipated debut album....
RAYOGRAPHS – Rayographs (Desire) - There’s a very personal feel of open honesty to this debut Rayographs album: an open book, alive with thought, alive with the delight of discovery; of curiosities, journeys, celebrations, commemorating, suitcases of memories, things in the topsoil, an album alive as people’s lives evolve and a band’s thoughts come together.
London’s Rayographs have always been rather special, rather different, and with this debut album, they’re becoming rather magical. Already magical. They have a sound that is both familiar and unique - a one-off version of West Coast psychedelic sound that's also strangely appropriate to their London roots. Deeper in now, a little darker sounding, they always have had an elegant enchantment but now the three of them have grown into their band, there’s a depth here that, for some reason, we didn’t feel we had the right to expect. I guess it goes with watching a band grow up in front of you. If the Rayographs had been from say New York or Chicago, and this debut album had just landed out of the blue then we’d accept its quality right away. Rayographs are a London band, exuding the smell of those dark venues; we’ve watched them evolve, their early gigs, demos, singles, we do have to do a double-take to reassure ourselves that this debut album really is this significantly good.
Their blues feel has richer depths: the psychedelic freedom of Grace Slick, the darkness and mystery of Come, that vital edge of alt.rockness, of a brooding Sonic Youth being Jefferson Airplane, the 90’s riot Grrrl bands adding an unconcious influence. Rayographs have the confidence and the vision to more than pull it all off now, there’s some serious musicians here, some serious songwriters, music makers, creative minds not afraid to look into eyes. A darkly crafted shimmering take on psychedelia, something that is very much of now as well as then – timeless, dark vibrant colours, rich deep blues, dark purples, steam-of-consciousness thought, atmospheric tunes, atmospheric lines, words, delicate pieces that thunder when they need to. Sparse, dense, so so alive and the sound of three people needing to be a little more than just another competent London band who sound like all the others, a band challenging themselves, taking risks, aspiring to a little more than a decent review on page 43 of the NME. Proper foundations, concrete, things to build on, a heady mix, Pixies, Patti Smith, PJ Harvey, a rich sound – sonic, visual, literary, they’ve carefully crafted their sound, honing it all over the last three or so years, the three of them growing as one – Astrud Steehouder on guitar and vocals, Jessamine Tierney on bass vocals, Amy Hurst on drums and occasional vocals, three girls creating some kind of magical musical chemistry
30th JULY 09...
THE RAYOGRAPHS – Frances/Yellow Hair (Everything We Know) – More from The Rayographs, good, we all need more, second single from the three girls and they’ve built on all that elegance and enchantment that we talked of last time... Built on it all in a seriously good way with these two new tracks. They kind of mix a classic riot-grrrl ethic with a PJ Harvey style Nick Cave blues feel, more than that though, they're not that easy to pin down ... they’re stark yet full bodied, wired yet rich, they really are creating something that threatens to be special, they’ve got a dark edge, a menace that you wouldn’t want to mess with. Sharp, atmospheric, alive... Pixies good and who cares if Courtney is making a new Hole record or not, Rayographs are fast becoming the band Courtney would love to be in... that good... and only two singles in... fine basslines, sharp drums, stark words, imaginantion, real blues.... One of those stand out records that doesn’t often come along, one of the genuinely exciting new bands...and how good is that moody riff at the start of Yellow hair... catch this conversation, pay attention, this is special.... www.myspace.com/therayographs or www.everyoneweknow.co.uk
ORGAN #278 OCT 16th '08 -
SINGLE OF THE WEEK
THE RAYOGRAPHS – Hidden Doors (Everyone We Know) – Stark sparse warmth and a feral starkness, three girls with their moody debut single, bit of a Jefferson Airplane Feed Your Head thing going down, touch of Breeders. A debut seven inch single in hand painted artwork. Dark blue and deep violet sounds, strangely good bass lines, narrative impressions, Siouxsie swirls and out in the forest folk drifts, with maybe a touch of something Patti Smith (or Rose Kemp), there’s an elegance to their enchanting mystery, a seductive come here and see what we’ve got, dark and dense and brooding and something good brewing here.