Saturday Night at The Howff with Gil De Ray, Declan Welsh & The Decadent West and Lizzie Reid
howff /haʊf/. A favourite meeting place or haunt, especially a pub.
Welcome to Saturday night at the Howff, Bella’s lounge for the lockdown with Gil De Ray, SAY award nominee Declan Welsh & The Decadent West and Lizzie Reid.
‘Seamless’ is the second of two recent single releases from Glaswegian singer-songwriter Lizzie Reid. Both are reflections on break-ups, but ‘Seamless’ takes a more sombre stance than the acquiescent and optimistic ‘Tribute’. Seamless is a sincere and heartbroken song, opening with tender guitar chords evocative of the most solitary of bedroom concerts. Reid’s mournful vocals are warm and clear, akin to the likes of Julia Jacklin, and beautifully complimented by elegant, stirring strings. The result is a mature and poignant take on love lost; an honest and melancholy contemplation on all that went wrong, and all that was gained.
Reid says of the track : “I listened to the demo on the train from London to Glasgow. I had tears streaming down my face. That was when I realised, I had written something deeply personal to me.”
Growing up in suburban East Kilbride and now based in Glasgow, Declan Welsh is a poet and songwriter that has managed to cement his individuality by putting humanity at the core of his comments about today’s current affairs. Along with his band The Decadent West, Welsh is here to use his music as a catalyst for hope and for change. Their SAY award winning album, Cheaply Bought, Expensively Sold, was actually released on this weekend last year but is in the 2020 shortlist for album of the Year.
Recorded at 7west and produced by Glasgow staple Chris Marshall, the album affirms the message that politics are always personal. They’re tethered to our every day and whether it’s through music, social media or conversations with friends, this need for collective comfort and camaraderie is more important than ever. As opener and single ‘No Fun’ cheekily asks in a London accent, who even listens to guitar music anymore? For Welsh and The Decadent West, it’s a need to create messages of solidarity to those that feel lost and unheard, providing an insatiable, refreshing contrast to the squawking suppressors.
Gil De Ray’s 8th self released album Voodootron blends electronic production with raw psychedelia and Stooges-style existential indignation, and a slice of LoFi All Stars party music.
The album is produced in collaboration with the Helsinki-based Parisian musician, Benjamin Floor Trauma and is accompanied with a post-apocalyptic graphic novel tale by Gil which was inspired by the songs. The story is about psychedelics saving the world, inspired by the work of Terence McKenna and experiments with the sacred mushroom.
The artwork is created by Martin Kingdom, the East London based artist and illustrator, whose pen, ink and silkscreens poleaxe a mundane despair with a tikstrain. Originally from Glasgow, Gil lives and records in South East London. Find out more about his work at www.gilderay.bandcamp.com