Screech Bats – ‘Wish You Were Her’

By Andy Joice

Last time we heard from London based punk quartet Screech Bats was the beginning of 2017 when we premiered their video ‘E.T.’ from their debut, self-titled EP and and now they’re back with follow-up ‘Wish You Were Her’, spitting out more riot grrrl punk anthems.

‘Wish You Were Her’ erupts with the pounding ‘Blood In My Hair’, a hard hitting but melodic opener that sets the scene for the remainder of the EP. You’re immediately beaten round the head by Lexi Clark’s crashing drums, pounding bass lines from Rio Hellyer and understated rhythms from guitarist Kit Reeve.

But it’s Esme Baker’s distinctive vocals that really sets it apart. She’s got such a rich, chocolatey timbre you can’t help but get sucked in. There’s a sense of the operatic in Baker’s almost overly clean delivery that creates a synergy between each part, harmonising together to create a unique sound.

Lyrically, Screech Bats have matured since their debut EP and tackle heavier issues. From the perils of ageing in ‘Just Like You’ to the imminent breakup up of a relationship in ‘That Valentine Song’, they prove they’re not ashamed to take on uncomfortable subjects shied away from by most bands.

Lead single, ‘Get Better’ focuses on Baker’s personal experience of dealing with mental health and the help she received from medical teams. Despite the melancholic tone, it’s a reflective and uplifting song about battling through adversity and coming out the other side clean. It’s subtly melodramatic yet never overbearing. It’s a testament to how well written the track, and the album as a whole, is. It’s frank, honest and full of heart.

ANDY JOICE

Three more album reviews for you

Møl - 'Jord'

Nosebleed - 'Scratching Circles on the Dancefloor'

Coldbones - 'Where It All Began'