The Hundred In The Hands will be releasing their self-titled debut album on September 20. Here they give us an exclusive lowdown on the tracks.
Young Aren’t Young
"This first song actually began life super striped down. It was a sort of Afri-tinged Young Marble Giants track. You can still just about hear a little ghost of the original guitar part in the third verse. It’s a song that kind of feels different depending on volume. Listening to it quietly it feels dreamy, but when it’s cranked up, the bass line and kick steps forward and the song begins to feel darker and harder."
Lovesick (Once Again)
"There’s a few different things we were thinking about here: Fugazi guitars, reggae bass and hip-hop beats with an Rn’B chorus. Throughout the verses there’s a moody drone that kind of gives it a more post-punk Cure-ish undercurrent. The drone was made by running the vocals through a pretty average reverb plug-in and cranking the delay time and room size as far as they could go so the vocal lines trail and you get these tone clusters."
"The lyrics on this are about failed relationships and faded glories. The track actually began more like 'Dressed In Dresden', with stabby guitar chords but then we took a step back and it came together really quickly in this totally different way. It’s actually one of the few tracks we jammed out."
"This is about a teenage girl living in a city. On weekends, she and her friends hang out in a park. She zones out staring at them. She sneaks out and goes to parties. She’s got a crush and they hook-up but she’s doing it more out of boredom and restlessness and he’s doing it because he’s a teenage boy. It’s like a looped narrative, every weekend, the same thing. In the final verse, she wakes up in the boy’s room, climbs out the window and up to the roof where she looks at the city and at the pigeons flying in circles above and wonders why they don’t just fly away out of the dirty city. If she could she would."
"Fully of Wiry guitars, layers of synth-pads and arpeggios, this is probably our most out and out dance-off track. Lyrically, it’s about an unhealthy relationship where the one keeps stirring the other up by withholding emotion, sex, love or whatever. But the sticky part for the protagonist here is that she realises that the commotion he puts her through is a big part of the attraction."
This Day Is Made
"We were thinking we wanted to make a proper Rn’B slow-jam, but do it in our own way and have all the gauzy textures, ethereal guitars and blissed out swells and drones. It was also a good chance to build up a big vocal harmony. Lyrically, the song’s about feeling rather trapped, sordid, caught in the ruts."
"In a way this was a return to the world of Young, dreamy pop with a Chic/slow disco edge, tropical and expansive with a melancholic undercurrent. But in the lyrics, it’s all melancholy. Like a lot of the tracks on the record, it’s about being stuck in one place and feeling the weight of it, wanting to get away."
"We wrote this early on and it was just the guitar chords which we recorded and then sampled. Without being too referential, we were looking for uptown meets downtown. The chorus came together afterwards with the slight key change. On this track it really comes to the fore because we were going for something that would feel a bit more obliterated than some of the other tracks. Another song about faded glories and romance."
Dressed In Dresden
"We wrote this before we were really a band and it was an experimentation. The guitar was again built off a 16 chord, 8 bar cycle which we were kind of geeking out on in Justice tracks because they do that a lot and it allows for a more expansive story in the music. It was great to work on a track where there¹s really zero emotional investment in anything but getting the song to a good place."
"It’s a kind of a post apocalyptic sci-fi track, but also kind of an apocalypse of the ordinary or the fantasy world obliviousness that comes with not being able to really comprehend that darkness. There’s references to Richard Feynman and the first atomic bomb tests, Le Jette and Vertigo and the looped dub-memory of civilization but also to just plain foolishness and hipsters acting distanced and absurd."
"This was literally the last song we wrote for the LP, recording it entirely at home with some very low rent gear. The final version is pretty much what the demo was but cleaned up substantially. There’s something kind of Beatlesy about the progression with its tonal ambiguity and fake out modulations."