The dancefloor has transformative, magical powers. Each of us has a story – perhaps just a brief moment – of sheer ecstasy and happiness in a throbbing nightclub, or a festival field overflowing with beautiful bodies, all yearning for the same goal: joy, elation and release. Glasgow band VLURE are particularly focused on the latter point, but not necessarily through the same cheery prism – the five-piece consider the space an opportunity to release tension and exorcise knotty emotions and trauma.
The band’s aptly-titled debut EP, ‘Euphoria’, thrives in those darker moments – not every dancefloor is a happy-clappy affair. “Our shows are my therapy session,” vocalist Hamish Hutcheson told NME last year. “I get to tell my problems to a room full of people and they have to listen because I have a microphone,” he said, adding: “I need this outlet.”
When Hutcheson is candid in his lyrics, there are moments of sheer brilliance. ‘I Won’t Run (From Love)’ is the EP’s most complete track, and the lashings of industrial rock allow a vivid storyteller to emerge. “I awoke, to find myself / Searching the ashes of my youth”, he confesses, adding that he’s “destroyed by his own mind”, one that’s now “devoid of feeling, love or meaning”; there are shades of Echo and The Bunnymen and The Cure in his gothic tendencies, but warmth, too.
The love letters to the parties – and the afters – ensure that the infamous Glasgow club scene offers similar rushes. Hutcheson begins ‘Heartbeat’ with a promise to “dance to ma bodies numb”, and on ‘Euphoria’ he remembers ”another night that didn’t end”, but whether he wants to break this cycle or do it all over again the following weekend is less clear. The directness isn’t as revelatory as the EP’s introspective moments – rarely are techno-infused bangers able to nail it – but they show promise and opportunities to combine the two further down the road.
Now that they’ve had their release – that rush of energy and emotion they’d been craving for some time – there’s opportunities for VLURE to head off in many fascinating directions. For now, ‘Euphoria’ offers all you could want form a great party: laughter, tears and a dash of drama.
- Release date: January 14
- Record label: So Young Records