Stream brand new track ‘Best Friend’ by our New Band Of The Week, Kid Wave – and read their debut NME feature below.
Disillusioned Swede comes to London, assembles dream gaze’n’grunge band. Interview by James Bentley.
“There’s a track I wrote called ‘Baby Tiger’, which is about a dream I had last year,” explains Kid Wave’s frontwoman Lea Emmery, speaking from a park in Yorkshire during a break on the band’s tour with Palma Violets. “I had been feeling really down at the time, but then I had this dream where I was carrying a baby tiger around – just carrying it. And then I woke up… and I just felt amazing. Maybe it was a symbol that things were going to get better.”
New beginnings are a recurring theme with Kid Wave. Lea uprooted from her native Sweden to move to London in 2011 after becoming disillusioned with the indie scene on the country’s east coast; it was here in the UK that her dream-weaving grunge (think Lush on diazepam) found its feet. “I was playing in an all-girl punk band”, she explains, “but it all just felt a bit dead. There was no market for new rock music, the music they played on the radio was uninspiring, there were no gigs and there were no festivals. I just wanted to get out of there.”
It proved to be a fortuitous move for the 22-year-old. Taking up a course in sound engineering and spending the rest of her time recording demos on GarageBand, Lea was quickly snapped up by Heavenly Recordings just as the rest of the industry started knocking. “I started to get emails from people asking when we were going to plays gigs and I just said, ‘I dunno’, because I hadn’t even got a band together at that point. I had just moved over from a different country – I didn’t know anyone.”
Bringing new friends Serra Petale (drums), Mattias Bhatt (guitar) and Harry Deacon (bass) on board to complete the line-up, and with a stream of loud gigs behind them (“It’s a lot more rock’n’roll live,” she says), Kid Wave are now set to release their debut LP ‘Wonderlust’ on June 1. And as the sun-drenched fuzz of ‘Gloom’ and the blissed-out ‘All I Want’ make clear, it’ll be a sound that’s perfectly suited for a hazy summer.
“Some say dreaming is a waste of time”, Lea sings on their most recent single ‘Honey’ – but with a sound as alluringly lucid as this, it’s somewhat difficult to agree with her.
KID WAVE: NEED TO KNOW
FOR FANS OF Lush, The Breeders
BUY IT NOW Album ‘Wonderlust’ is out June 1 on Heavenly Recordings
SEE THEM LIVE London Lexington (May 7 w/Bully), Bristol Start The Bus (8 w/Bully), Manchester Night & Day Café (May 9 w/Bully), Leicester The Scholar (May 10 w/Bully), Cornwall Port Eliot Festival (July 30–August 2)
BELIEVE IT OR NOT Before moving to London, Lea lived in Iceland for two months, where she cared for horses. She insists that “it wasn’t a serious career move”.