The Mysterines: Dipping into their rock roots on new album ‘Afraid of Tomorrows’

Formed in Liverpool, in 2016 – with members originating from the nearby Wirral area – the angst-ridden, grunge-inspired indie quartet are fronted by vocalist, guitarist, and primary songwriter Lia Metcalfe, taking influence from acts such as Hole and PJ Harvey.

Metcalfe’s father, Andrew, fronted the local act Sound of Guns – and later, Guide – and so was on hand to teach her chords when she showed interest in the guitar at the age of nine. Surrounded by music from an early age, forming a band seemed like a natural progression. After meeting bass player George Favager in 2014, they bonded over similar musical interests, planning and scheming for a couple of years until drummer Zak McDonnell came on board. By the time of their debut single – 2018’s “Hormone” – McDonnell had been replaced by Metcalfe’s close friend, Chrissy Moore. The track received the full support of the Coral’s James Skelly, and his Skeleton Key label, which led to the trio joining Miles Kane on a national tour. It was eventually included on their debut EP, August 2019’s Take Control, a record that was completed at Skelly’s Parr St. Studios. Further dates followed, with acts such as the Amazons and Royal Blood. Although Moore had departed by 2020, momentum continued to build behind The Mysterines, with Metcalfe and Favager appearing before the press as a duo. Then, in a frantic few weeks, Paul Crilly (drums) and Callum Thompson (guitar) joined the band, and they completed their first national tour as a quartet just prior to the initial COVID-19-related lockdowns in March 2020.

At this point, Metcalfe lived alone, so she returned from the tour to a quiet home with plenty of time to compose new material. May 2020 saw the band issue the Love’s Not Enough EP, which went on to enjoy over two million streams, sparking interest from Universal Music, who ultimately signed them. As lockdowns eased, the quartet began to share the same property to craft ideas for their debut album sessions, which commenced in July with Catherine Marks at London’s Assault & Battery Studios.

In March 2021, the record was completed following three intense, one-week stints in the capitol. In May, Metcalfe made a vocal appearance on Paul Weller’s Fat Pop, Vol. 1, and in July, the Mysterines’ debut Universal single, “In My Head,” saw release. The track received significant national airplay from BBC 6 Music, as did its follow-up singles, “Hung Up,” “The Bad Thing,” and “Dangerous.” Then, in March 2022, 18 months after sessions for it began, the Mysterines’ debut album, Reeling, was finally issued and entered the Top Ten of the U.K. album chart.

Today, the band return with their sophomore album Afraid of Tomorrows.

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About J.N.

Music researcher with an unhealthy passion for music and music festivals. Former studio owner, semi-functional drummer and with a fairly good collection of old analogue synthesizers from the 70's. Indie rock, post rock, electronic/industrial and drum & bass (kind of a mix, yeah?) are usual stuff in my playlists but everything that sounds good will fit in.
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