No matter what the masses say, sad songs are infinitely and undeniably better than happy ones. The emotions that go into the sadder of croons are simply more vivid and probing, it’s just science. So when bands harness the power of pensiveness and write music that is as relatably daunting as it is unmistakably catchy, it’s rather a beautiful thing.
Saying that Barnstaple’s Pretend Happy have pretty much nailed the formula with their debut full-length ‘Tired Eyes’. Drawing plenty of influence from broken home towns, battered dreams and punctured hearts, the trio thrash and hack at their own already-bruised subconscious and come out the other end with some unmistakably poignant results.
The title track toys with blurry honesty and relatable conscience, ‘Iced Teeth’ bounds about with jittering melancholy and ‘Dirt’ channels plenty of ‘90s angst to counter its discouraging context.
Overall, ’Tired Eyes’ is a distressed and discontented display from a band who have experienced their fair share of heartache and know how to convert it to bloody good tunes. With Hindsights hanging up their tear-stained boots only the other week, Pretend Happy have the style, substance and sorrow to comfortably slot into their place as the most upset band in Britain.
‘Tired Eyes’ by Pretend Happy is released on February 8th on Tape Culture Records.
Words by Jack Rogers (@JackMRog)