“The Boy Is A Mess” by The Orchids

Scottish band The Orchids, have been making wonderful music for over two decades, when Sarah Records first started. The Orchids have a passionate following. The band say: ‘it’s OK to admit weakness. It’s OK to be fragile. That’s where true strength comes from’. From Glasgow, and proudly Scottish, the band shares a musical lineage with other known groups from that city, from Aztec Camera to Orange Juice, Lloyd Cole to Teenage Fanclub.

Producer Ian Carmichael has helped the band subtly accentuate the drama of the songs. On “This Boy Is A Mess” (the lead track off the album), the lyric confesses frailty while the music gets stronger and stronger. It is bittersweet and exhilarating at the same time. ‘I Want You, I Need You’ has harmonies as big as a house – but the yearning message remains intimate and close. ‘I Don’t Mean To Stare’ is a sophisticated new version of the track that first appeared on the Under The Bridge compilation earlier this year.

Album opener ‘Didn’t We Love You’ daringly opens up empty spaces where the reverb of the drums is the only thing you can hear… and then floods your ears with a harmonised chorus, sweet guitar melodies and sweeping effects. Even then, the lyrical lament, expressing the desire to live in a better place – a place unspoilt by the greedy phonies who’ve taken over – comes across as clearly as if Hackett were leaning over for a friendly chat in the snug bar of The Orchids’ favourite Glasgow pub.

Rob and Amelia (Skep Wax Records) say: “the first gig we went to after lockdown was the Preston Popfest. It was an emotional occasion: many bands were playing for the first time in two years. The Orchids were really special that night. We were surprised to hear so many new songs, and such great new songs too – really powerful. That’s the night we decided to ask if we could release their album.”

The Orchids are:

Ronnie Borland – bass, keyboards, guitar, backing vocals

James Hackett – lyrics, vocals, acoustic guitar, melodica

Chris Quinn – drums, percussion

John Scally – lead guitar, keyboards

Keith Sharp – rhythm guitar


Ian Carmichael – keyboards, rhythm programming

Pauline Hynds Bari – vocals

Paul Quinn – percussion

Pre-order Dreaming Kind by The Orchids HERE


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