With consistent appraisal for their work as an independent label, Art Is Hard Records continue to shape a broadening landscape into their own mould, on their own terms. Now with the announcement of their annual record club for this year, AIH once again display their natural character within their work with ‘The Handcut Record Club‘. Releasing a new single from a different band every three weeks for the rest of the year, the label are handcrafting twenty-five 7″ singles of each track themselves, fittingly embodying their liberating ethos. There’s not many better suited bands they could choose to release a single from first, than in Falmouth Garage-Pop trio The Red Cords.
With the band set to release their new EP, ‘Vile Guy‘, in the coming months, this is a more than impressive opening statement. Merging their short, Lo-Fi Garage Pop with sharp, raucous Gutter-Punk leanings, the already staple live-favourite ‘Scratch It Off‘ immediately certifies it’s importance and confidence without a sweat. The trio use three-chord punk’s leisurely nature as a clear declaration of the lackadaisical and fun approach they take. The infusing of break-neck hooks and Ry Cleave‘s influential, melodic bass progressions further express their beloved youthful negligence, whilst proving they aren’t afraid to let loose and jam within their framework acts as middle-fingered indifference to constriction.
Charlie Murphy‘s condition wavers throughout the brisk track, veering from blissful neglect to angsty desire. His venomous enunciation of ” I don’t know what you’ve been told, but it’s not all chill man; and I don’t know what you’ve been told but it’s not all understood.” is a super-kick to the despondents, met with spit. The killer chorus is the proverbial cherry, it’s shout-along harmonies delivering the message.
More than your average angry punks and beach slackers, The Red Cords find the quintessential balance of short, sharp statements of frustration and intensity whilst crafting memories of unbridled enjoyment. It’s untampered, warm, and succinct production makes ‘Scratch It Off‘ the typical embodiment of not just the band’s, but the label’s valued personality.
Each release from Art Is Hard’s ‘The Handcut Record Club’ is made available here.
Header Image by Morgan Lloyd-Matthews.