London’s Famous reveal new single Forever ahead of debut mini-album England. Their softest-edged cut to date, it’s a literary tinged art-rock tune eschewing the panicked chaos of previous releases in favour of an almost maudlin sentimentality. Forever tugs at your emotions, owing to vocalist Jack Merrett’s by turns resigned, matter-of-fact and desperate vocals, reminiscent of a Heroes-era David Bowie or Pavement’s Stephen Malkmus. He explains the reasoning:
“I wrote Forever about a year ago, whilst reading Goethe’s The Sorrows of Young Werther; a very beautiful but very ridiculous story about unrequited love. The more I read, the more the story started to resemble a situation in my own life. So I took the character’s names and, with that anonymity, was able to speak more cuttingly about my experiences. This is definitely where Famous is going directionally; gushing, slower songs with a big emphasis on lyricism. It’s ultimately quite a conventional love song, if very grandiose. It’s something I’m very proud of”.
Forever develops on a distinctively hyperbolic, mythic re-imagination of urban life which lies at the heart of Famous’ upcoming mini-album ‘England’. Merrett finds it therapeutic; using theatricality and the emotional authority of art to navigate the chaos of anxiety.
Famous don’t chase subtlety per say. Their renowned live performances are huge, brash affairs; recalling the sad grandeur of a Vegas-era Elvis. This music is, nonetheless, thoughtful and surprising – the band are strongly associated with the London arts-scene behind the Guardian 4* rated experimental theatre piece Ubu, also garnering acclaim from i-D. Indeed, Ubu director Peter Price directed Forever’s poignant, rural video. Watch here