Saturday, 23 May 2020
With yestetrday's announcement of the 8-strong shortlist for the 2020 Glastonbury Emerging Talent Competition, it seems like a good time for me to do an introducing piece on the Liverpool band Courting - one of the bands on the list. I first came across them in early January when they put out their frenetic single Football, their second track after debut single Not Yr Man which was released in 2019.
Courting sound like a raucous riotous proposition. Their music is the gang sound of screwed up faces and sweat; pummelling guitars and shouty vocals that are mosh-pit ready, but with something underneath it that suggests they might not just stick to one formula as they develop. They come from the same place musically as bands such as Feet, Hotel Lux, Sorry and Squid. They’re the sort of band that indie kids will like but so will your BBC 6 Music listening ex-punk middle-aged dad.
Their stand-out song of the three they have released online so far is the aforementioned Football. The band describe it as being about the importance of the sport in British culture, but also how that leads to parents living out their dreams by pushing their kids into it. It’s good to see bands tackling interesting and different topics; it makes a real change from another 'be who you want to be' anthem.
Their latest tune is the chirpy David Byrne’s Badside, which has both a punky strut and a swagger of Britpop combined with the best of The Libertines. It's not to do with the Talking Heads frontman (which would have been amusing) but instead tackles class tourism and casual racism. It also features a saxophone solo and for this reason alone is worth your listen. More of this musical variation please.
You can see the full list of Glastonbury Emerging Talent Competition finalists by clicking here.
It’s a competition I’ve helped judged in the past and it always throws up some fine quality acts. 2020 also sees a few oddities on the list in so far as they are artists that have already been around for a long time, showing if nothing else that musicians have to be in it for the long game these days – success doesn’t always come overnight. I first remember coming across Ajimal for example in 2011/12 when I read about him on another music blog (Flying with Anna – now long retired) and he played Southsea Fest (RIP) in my home city around that time. I subsequently nominated him myself for the Glastonbury Competition long list in 2016. Also, Joshua Burnside will probably be known to many music fans having won the Northern Ireland Music Prize in 2017 (I wrote about him here)
Courting however are fresh out the box having formed at school in 2018. Give them a listen below and get energised by their sound.
Courting - Football
Courting - David Byrne's Badside
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