Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Ian Grimble and Richard Matthews of Communion Music at 2KHz, Crouch End, London
Cold Pumas lead singer Patrick Fisher gives a fascinating answer to a question in a piece that was published by the great United Kingdom music tabloid, Loud and Quiet, asking him how he writes his lyrics. He replied, "To summarize: in a turgidly unevocative manner, very much after the moment has gone, on a computer, in my bedroom, in silence. They basically all tend to focus on the classic subject of ole faithful. Occasionally I'll write some tiring unrelenting ode to a past era as a very transparent metaphorical variation on the theme, but that's really my one-track-minded remit. I think when we began this band (I mean musical journey), I wrote some turgidly meaningless tripe, most of which was contrived on a bench in Hoxton Square while Rory Bratwell was brewing up a nice cup of tea at halftime. Then we'd cake it so heavily in reverb, that it had ultimately been pointless writing anything other than a set of phonetic guidelines anyway. Oh the Golden Summer of Dude Culture."
He could have just said that he writes in his bedroom, in front of a computer screen, the way most of us do everything we do with our days, but the texture and his version of self-deprecation add so much more to the attention that we might give to the washed out words that his reverb does try to strangle. If we really are getting odes to past eras and conceptualizations of "the classic subject of ole faithful," this is a whole different sea of froth than we thought we were getting with the Brighton band.
Fisher, brother Oliver Fisher and Dan Reeves push us into some beautiful murkiness, the kind that rings out. It hangs in the air like exhaust, while feeling like we're taking a stoned, winter drive through the neighborhoods looking at all of the houses decked out in Christmas lights. The songs do this wonderful thing, where they just gnaw on you. They tug on your sleeves and they gather around you, pulling in close, burning off the tension that they are built around extremely slowly. These are the persistent pinches that we're not getting away from anything.