John Newton and Johnny Healey – the duo behind London’s post punk group JOHN – have released their new single ‘Hopper on the Dial’, taken from their new 7″ out on February 17th. A collaboration with London’s Tom Hill and Rhode Island’s Seth Manchester, the track takes inspiration from Edward Hopper’s paintings and blends introspective and intimate vocals with energetic guitars and drums.
Lyricist Newton made a collage-like video to accompany the track, saying he “understands music’s ability to create imagery and interpretation”.
“The title alludes to the contemplative characters of Edward Hopper’s paintings – often locked in thought in a series of dream-like interiors. The song functions in a similar manner: a wandering view that mulls over the potential of a future – whether that be the security of an occupation, home or environment,” he explained.
The track starts with a broody intro, offering a slow build-up to a characteristically thrashing finale of shoegaze guitars and raw vocals. ‘There’s no limit / The dial keeps twisting’, Newton sings, and the track seems to reflect those words, slowly following the duo as they search for the big finale.
Sticking with the slow intro pays off – the listener is rewarded with the moody guitars and lyrics culminating in an angry, energetic climax. If you open yourself up to the song, you will find it will take you on a journey through your imagination – what images will it evoke for you?
Words: Clara Bullock // Photo: Paul Grace
‘Hopper on the Dial’ is out now digitally, and as a 7″ single with A-side ‘Theme New Bond Junior’ via Brace Yourself Records on February 17th. Listen to both tracks and pre-order the physical release via Bandcamp.