FFO: manchester based six-piece mealtime
One of the most enigmatic and entrancing bodies of work you'll hear this year is Aperitif, the debut EP from Manchester based synth pop band Mealtime. It was released at the beginning of the summer, when people were still becoming acclimated to life indoors and listening to what felt normal and comfortable and comforting, but now that we're accustomed to our new lives, we can begin again to branch outside of our own comfort zones, no?
The six-piece met in Manchester when they were in university, having had plenty of time to develop their own tastes in music, but which were still similar enough for them to be drawn to one another to create together. And this shines through in their music - every song on Aperitif is uniquely beguiling, each track entirely separate from its peers (in the band's own words - "Having six people all contributing affects that" - and they refer to each of their individual tastes as the "flavor" they add to the tunes) and yet the body of work is so whole you can't imagine them on any other record, in any other order. How is Aperitif so massive, despite being the first major release from Mealtime? Even its name implies this is only a taste of what's to come from the band. They've collected praise from some of the most recognizable names in music journalism, including DIY and NME. Their song "Excess" is Jack Saunders's tune of the week, which is beyond exciting for the band - anything that Jack's put his stamp of approval on is special without a doubt.
If you're a fan of recent FFO alums Talk Show, or of Sinead O Brien, Coach Party, or Working Men's Club, you'll love Mealtime, although they're one of those bands you listen to and genuinely wonder if you've ever heard anything like them before. Because their catalog is so conclusive, you won't have a hard time slapping them on repeat and getting yourself acquainted with the band before their inevitable rise to fame.