We’re lucky to have INHEAVEN. Not just because the south London quartet are establishing themselves as indie’s most dangerously exciting debut-album-darlings (see ya, Wolf Alice), but because they nearly never existed at all. “I wouldn’t have even put our music out,” singer James Taylor told NME last year. “I was happy writing for no one”.
At the insistence of friend and now-bassist Chloe Little, the group were conceived in 2015. Soon after, roaring debut single ‘Regeneration’ was released on Cult Records, run by The Strokes’ Julian Casablancas. Now we have their rock-heavy debut. ‘Baby’s Alright’ is a bombastic, horn-featuring opening, and there are Nirvana levels of rage on the grunge-tinged ‘Treats’. It’s the sound of all your messiest student rock nights packed into 39 breathless minutes.
There are softer moments too, like the floating pop of ‘Do You Dream’, but they’re just brief lapses I intensity. Relentless, pile-driving riffs dominate the record, none more so than on closer, ‘Velvet’. INHEAVEN sound like they’d get get near those pearly gates, more like they’ve come bursting out of the fiery depths of hell. We’re well into it.