Courting - Grand National
Although their Bandcamp page claims they are a Take That cover band, Courting are in fact a cracking indie band from Liverpool, playing joyous scrappy pop punk.
Previous single David Byrne’s Badside is an ethusive blast of jangly pop, inspired by watching Talking Heads’ Stop Making Sense too much and worrying….what if David Byrne real IS a Psycho Killer?? They then used that to in fact call out the casual pub racism of little Englanders (“He spits at the people when they’re not his own / I thought we united, he says it’s his home”). Its video is full of images of pubs sent in by fans when we still were locked down. I love their DIY approach.
Released on Nice Swan Records, Grand National is their first EP, compiling tracks released previously (Grand National and Popshop!) plus new tracks Crass and Slow Burner.
Grand National is a barrage of kinetic guitars, as their singer opines he wouldn’t place a bet if you paid him - “Can't you comprehend? It's just not all that grand”. Wise words, as I have yet again lost the annual office Grand National sweepstake…when will we learn?
Popshop! gently mocks ginger superstar Ed Sheeran (“But if you stream “Shape of You” you’re going to hell / And that’s a promise.”). Bless him, he’s such a good sport, Ed’s plugged the ep on Twitter so that’s a bit of fun that paid off.
Crass is all narcissism and Kanye West and Take That name drops, with a repetitive squall of guitars and thumping drums. Closer Slow Burner sounds like Joy Division with cow bells, with a circular mantra shouted repeatedly - it’s strangely appealing.
Courting are definitely one to watch - DIY skills to the fore and not afraid to experiment, whilst retaining a sense of infectious fun.