By Jon Milton
What have tax havens, Aylesbury, middle aged male torso's, media manipulation and gentrified drinking in hipster land got in common? You’d be forgiven for thinking that it might be a salacious story about a Tory MP but no, it is in fact the subject matter behind the rather fine debut EP by Home Counties, released today simultaneously with one of its tracks as a single ‘That’s Where the Money’s Gone’.
The Redevelopment EP, out on Alcopop Records and produced by that man Theo Verney contains five tracks in total – Redevelopment, the song that made us all sit up and go ‘I like this – who is it by?’ in March and introduce the band, Dadbod, source of wry smiles amongst many males of a certain age and undoubtedly among others also, and three new tracks.
Photo by Naz Stone
Latest single ‘That’s Where The Money’s Gone’ continues where its predecessors left off musically, striding wonk-pop that lyrically doesn’t require too much to work out. Will from the band says of the song 'It's possibly the most lyrically simple track of the EP. Its message is so to the point, it probably even seems quite juvenile. It’s about contemporary conversations of where money goes and comes from. It was written very spontaneously around the time of Brexit and the last general election, and presents an oversimplified conversation about tax havens, immigration and welfare'.
The remaining tracks ‘Chuggin’ and ‘Raoul’ however open a new slant on the band’s music bringing elements of Captain Beefheart and Island era Tom Waits to the band’s repertoire. ‘Chuggin’, which explores the double standards of gentrified drinking in Shoreditch is a slightly sinister polka, and Raoul, about the media representation of Raoul Moat as a masculine hero rather than a terrorist (which he no doubt would be if he wasn’t white) some twisted indie take on Latin-jazz.
The cover art on the EP features Aylesbury on market day, designed to ‘encapsulate the mood of the EP, being a colourful portrayal of a grey concrete town centre’. Elaborating further, Will comments ‘This collection of songs tries to find something meaningful and playful in the typically mundane built-up spaces’.
This is a punchy debut from the band, brimming with astutely observed social commentary and inventive, top quality tunes. And there is more to come - as we found out in our interview with the band in July. Their second EP is already written, and a direction has been set to be ‘more Talking Heads and less Parquet Courts’ according to synth/percussion/vocalist Barn. What this means we’ll probably find out sometime next year, but in the meantime there’s enough in the Redevelopment EP to keep us all going for a while, so dig in.
Redevelopment EP is out now. You can buy it on cream vinyl at: