Amongst the overflowing sea of submissions in emails, you get the occasional album recommendation. You know the one friend that always knows their music? Well, this is what happened here. Orchards is a band from Brighton, Lovecore is their debut album and they were very heavily recommended by my dear friend G. Arguably the biggest accolade they’ve received thus far.
Blending elements of pop and math rock together, Orchards have a sound that celebrates the off-kilter and revels in its ability to jangle away. Opening track “Sincerely Overwhelmed” pairs sketchy guitars with funky drum beats, drizzled with anxiety-led lyricism. It’s the perfect combination of upbeat grooves with downtrodden vibes, allowing the taboo of mental health to be heard freely and with open ears. The warbling guitar riffs continue as “Burn Alive” delivers another instrumental that sticks into the mind, making room for more relatable topics to set up camp.
The dramatic intro of “Girlfriend” helps shift the album into a more serious tone. Frontwoman Lucy Evers’ lyrics continue to make impacts as this time she details the importance of self-love in the face of toxic relationships. These lyrics are paired with a strong instrumental bolstered with big chords and basslines that snake their way through the layers, producing a strong foundation for the song that arguably hits the hardest on Lovecore (note: actually, that might have to go to “History”. That riff. Oof.)
Lovecore is a fantastic album. Orchards are a band unafraid to let emotions and experiences be heard, and they’ve done it in a way that makes their music so easy to consume. There isn’t enough math rock going around these days, so it’s quite refreshing to hear it heard in abundance on this record. The instrumentals all follow the same notion, but there are enough hooks scattered all over to to ensure each song retains a lot of their own identity. This is one of the best debut albums I’ve heard all year.