Evans The Death – Live – Mono, Cornwall
London’s Evans The Death played at Falmouth’s Mono in support of their second album ‘Expect Delays’. Led by energetic front woman Katherine Whitaker the band powered through their cool blend of post punk. Played live the songs seemed to take a slightly different edge to the album and you can see why they have become a must see band on the live circuit. Read Lee Trewhela’s interview with the band below.
Falmouth’s The Black Tambourines and The Isabelles completed a strong line up of bands for the night and they both played outstanding sets. I’ve seen both bands a few times before in different venues but the live sound setup at Mono really does take bands to another level and this was apparent for me tonight for both bands.
Evans The Death
The Black Tambourines
Lee Trewhela’s interview with Evans The Death
THESE days the term “indie” is a broad catch-all for any band who might be crafting anything that’s not been touched by the hand of Kanye.
In the age of streaming when we are pointed to an act who sound like an act who sound like another act we may like, everything has become homogenised, even “indie”. You have to dig pretty deep for an alternative these days with “indie” becoming an even more generic – and insulting – term, bringing to mind such lifeless acts as The Pigeon Detectives and The Courteeners.
Of course, once upon a time, indie meant any band on an independent label, struggling to be heard in an era of horribly commercial radio when John Peel was your only hope of eagerly digesting anything out of the ordinary.
It meant groups who were both shamanic and shambolic; it was a wonderfully productive and golden era for British music, which ran roughly from 1978 to 1993.
There is now a band who hark back to that time of mangled guitars, naive anoraks, sweet fringes and songs which both pulverise and swoon.
Evans The Death (named after the undertaker in Under Milk Wood) released their eponymous debut in 2012 but it is this year’s Expect Delays which has astonished all who have heard it.
It’s one of those albums which has a diverse range of styles (a gentle Velvets type jangle here, a grungy pop belter there and a Smiths-like funereal ballad in Just 60,000 More Days ‘Til I Die slap bang in the middle) but is unified by an identifiable sound and a fantastic vocalist in Katherine Whitaker.
We should all be snapping up tickets to see the band at Falmouth’s Mono on Thursday, July 16.
Underneath all the noise on this ambitious record is a melancholy and aching beauty, informed by being in a, yes, indie band in the 21st-century.
Katherine told me: “There is a definite sense of hopelessness on the album – there were ups and downs when we were working on it, relationships were changing and dying, we had just done a disastrous tour including a Primavera festival slot, we were pissed the whole time, in rubbish jobs and were a bit poverty-stricken.
“The album was our chance to document that and, hopefully, improve things.
“Being a small indie band means you’re never going to make masses of money. I’ve spoken to a few people of my dad’s age who were in bands who said they were able to live off a couple of hit singles for a few years. That would never happen now.”
Katherine who – like the rest of the band – saw her debut album come out while still at school, added: “I quit my job this year so we could concentrate on touring. It’s very difficult being in a band, but when it’s going well it’s so worth it.”
Expect Delays is certainly a supremely crafted collection of songs, pointing to a bright future.
“Getting a bigger audience would be the next move,” said Katherine. “Having seen Sleater-Kinney play the Roundhouse, a support slot like that would be perfect.
“You have to choose wisely though – it might be a commercial decision but if it’s not the right band, you could lose your audience.”
With the doom-laden yet wryly humorous and poetic lyrics, it’s easy to see Katherine as the female equivalent of a certain bequiffed indie god.
“I’ve had the female Morrissey thing before – with our lyrics it kind of makes sense. I actually prefer female artists like Kate Bush and Patti Smith.
“I notice there’s still a tendency to point out a girl singer in a band. I just want to be known as a singer not a female singer.”
The first album saw guitarist Dan Moss writing alone, the second was Dan and brother Olly and now they’re working on a third album which sees all five members writing together.
“It’s bizarre that people want a consistency of sound in their favourite bands. We are open to whatever happens musically,” added Katherine.
You feel there’s a lot more to come from this band. Death is not the end.