The Hollow of Humdrum Album Review – Red Rum Club

Image source: camdenrocksfestival.com

Release Date: 2nd October 2020

If you haven’t yet heard of Red Rum Club… you will! Let me tell you about this fresh indie meets Americana band from right here in Liverpool so that you can go and check them out before they own the alternative music scene.

What first struck me about Red Rum Club was their complete originality. I couldn’t compare them to any other band I’d listened to before- there’s no one else they sound like but only themselves. The band consists of Francis Doran- lead vocals, Tom Williams and Michael McDermott on guitar and backing vocals, Simon Hepworth on bass, Neil Lawson on drums and Joe Corby on trumpet. Their debut album ‘Matador’ was released in January last year which was followed by a tour of the UK. The band saw themselves playing on the BBC Introducing stage at Glastonbury 2019 and were to no surprise a big hit, with the whole tent of festival-goers chanting their lyrics back to them.  

One of my instant favourite tracks from the album has to be ‘Ballerino’ for its bouncy, slightly gritty pre-chorus vocals and base riff. The claps and trumpet give it a real celebratory feel that makes it impossible to sit still whilst listening to this tune. In fact, almost all of their songs beg you to dance, or at the very least do the sway and head bop. ‘Kids Addicted’ is another favourite from the album- it’s a punch of fun that actually wraps up an honest, almost vulnerable message that I interpret as having that feeling of constantly searching for a buzz to lift the stresses, anxieties or just regularities of life, and how it’s sometimes not quite all you imagined it to be. But the chorus anthems how we cling onto those momentary highs we create and share with each other. The catchiest song off the record has to be ‘Eleanor’ with its repeated quirky sing-spelling of the song’s title and the name of one of the band member’s partners. I love that you can hear Doran’s Scouse accent through these vocals and throughout the album- it gives it that familiarity and extra northern flavour.

The brass brings this album to life- if you were dozing off, you’re not anymore. I found I was excited to hear the trumpet riffs in the new tracks as I played the album for the first time as they are such a defining feature, along with funky running bass rhythms and often ticking-like drums, and what I’m almost sure are castanets amongst other quirky sounds, that give Red Rum Club their unique flare.

It’s lovely to hear a more toned-down track from these talented musicians with ‘Favourite Record’ which is built on a beautiful acoustic guitar plucking that gains layers of gentle strumming, soft harmonies and mellow brass. ‘Holy Horses’ has a real South American carnival vibe about it, and ‘Dorado’ makes me want to hop onto a horse and ride off into a distant sunset!

This album has a great mixture of minor undertones and weighty bass evened out with uplifting major motifs and themes. With an amalgamation of vibes, from celebratory to pensive and romantic, to all-out cowboy basement party, Red Rum Club’s latest album is a musical experience you won’t want to skip.

Tickets for Red Rum Club’s upcoming 2021 tour are on sale now at redrumclub.com.