- Words Notion Staff
Notion gets to know four-piece Bleach Lab as they share bewitching new single "Talk It Out" ahead of their upcoming EP.
Welcome to Fresh Face, a new quick-fire interview series spotlighting the best rising talents in today’s youthful music scene. From biggest pet peeves to party tricks and death row meals, we’re stripping things back from the formal Q&A format. Think of it like speed dating, but with some of the freshest music makers worth discovering.
South London-based band, Bleach Lab, have been going from strength to strength since their debut in 2019. Now, with eight singles and one EP under their belt, they’re gearing up for the release of their second project, ‘Nothing Feels Real’, dropping 15th October. The record unpacks conversations around mental health and the longing for positive, constructive relationships.
Whilst the band has always produced sonically beautiful music, you can hear their continual progression with each release. They have an indisputable synergy between them, each note feeling completely in place and each project cohesive. Their sound conjures feelings of nostalgia for places you’ve never been and people you’ve never known, nevertheless, the feelings are just as visceral as if you had experienced them first hand.
Bleach Lab’s latest single “Talk It Out”, which dropped yesterday, touches upon the importance of honesty and vulnerability. Vocalist Jenna Cole sings about the repetitive routines of a toxic relationship over a soundscape that harks back to the days of shoegaze and indie-rock, drawing comparisons to legends like Mazzy Star and The Smiths, as well as the more current Wolf Alice.
Speaking about the track, the band say: “Talk It Out’ started as a song about mental health and times when people should open up about their inner thoughts and anxieties. As the song developed, we approached it from a perspective of being run down so much by a relationship that you thought you loved so much but over time realising that it’s changing who you are, all just to make the other person happy at the cost of your own happiness”.
We got to know Bleach Lab better and chatted about everything from their hatred of slow walkers to their favourite tracks to dance to, Dogecoin and more.
Sign up for Bleach Lab’s vinyl pre-orders here.
If you could bring three music icons to a dinner party, dead or alive, who would you bring?
Frank: Annie Clark aka St Vincent is a really skilled guitarist and all-round interesting artist who has managed to adapt her image from album to album in a really compelling way. I feel like she’d be an interesting addition to any dinner party.
Josh: Grimes, as I would hope she would bring Elon with her and we could sit and talk about space all night.
Jenna: Dolly Parton. I think it would be just like having your favourite auntie come over for dinner and we could sing together and drink red wine.
What is the biggest misconception about being in a band?
Josh: Once you start touring you have money.
If you were transported back to 2019, what’s the first thing you’d do?
Frank: Invest in Zoom.
Josh: Invest in Dogecoin… a cryptocurrency based on a meme, doesn’t get much more 2019 than that.
What’s your biggest pet peeve?
Josh: As a band, probably when we get called Beach Lab. It’s the worst.
Frank: For me personally its when people who don’t have luggage, use the wider luggage gates when getting on trains.
Jenna: Slow walkers.
Kieran: Yeah I am with Jenna on this one; dawdlers in London.
What’s your favourite song to dance to?
Frank: “The Headmaster Ritual”- The Smiths
Josh: “Rasputin” – Boney M
Kieran: “Love Generation” – Bob Sinclair
Jenna: “Everywhere” – Fleetwood Mac
One thing you want to change about the music industry?
Frank: Ban TikTok.
Josh: Bring back the MTV channel when it was just music videos on repeat all day. Those were the days…
How can a band stay original nowadays?
Frank: Don’t listen to too much of the same music. I do this way too often and it means so much of the stuff I write accidentally imitates the artists I’m listening to. It’s a huge bonus we all have quite different music tastes in the band, as I think that’s what allows us to bring forward lots of different ideas and influences to our sound.
What is your biggest pinch-me moment so far?
Frank: Getting booked to play at Latitude by BBC introducing. We were absolutely gutted when we were unable to play in the end due to Covid but we hope our time will come again.
Kieran: Similar to Frank, it was when Josh called me up and said we were potentially playing Latitude and The Lexington. Both were big goals of mine, but especially the latter. I used to spend every weekend in the Lexington. I saw pale waves there 2/3 years ago and I said then, that I was desperate to play to a packed-out crowd there one day. The fact I’m now weeks from doing that is nuts and I’m sure when that time comes, that will be my pinch-me moment.
Josh: Hearing ourselves on a playlist in a random pub and giving it a Shazam is always a buzz.
Jenna: I feel like all the milestones that we’ve been hitting so far as a band are all ‘pinch me’ moments! I’m especially aware of this though when we are on stage and realise that people have chosen to come and see us play it’s very surreal.
What’s your party trick?
Frank: I can put both legs behind my head.
Josh: I can rotate my hand 360 degrees.
Jenna: I can do this weird double-jointed thing with my arms…turns out we’re a very flexible band.
Kieran: My party trick is my dancing. Duh? But on the flexibility thing, I can get one leg behind my head, just not that impressive when Frank can do both.
Finish the sentence: I feel happiest when…
Kieran: At the pub with pals.
Josh: I take my socks off in bed.
Jenna: When I’m on the way to a weekend festival.
Frank: At a gig.