Biting on my tongue forever…

Having made a big impact with their 2018 album Ouseburn (see The Electricity Club review previously), Newcastle outfit Twist Helix have also been carving up the live circuit with their dynamic performances, including a star turn at the Silicon Dreams festival in 2019.

‘Louder’ sees Twist Helix continue in the tradition that they established through earlier singles such as ‘Little Buildings’, ‘Newcastle’ and ‘Graphite’ (as well as the title track from their 2018 album). While they’ve previously kept a balance between the synth and rock elements for previous outings, ‘Louder’ embraces more of an electronic aspect in its delivery.

“’Louder’ is about my frustration with the music industry” suggested Bea Garcia in an interview for Atwood Magazine, “the ingrained gender imbalance at festivals, the absence of female artists at industry events, and my exasperation at feeling trapped between being either ignored or made voiceless.”

This reaction has been sparked by the commentary on the lineups of UK festivals in recent years (as detailed in The British Festival Report 2019), particularly the lack of female artists on the bill for some of the biggest events.This includes a particularly poor showing for Download with just three percent of its line-up identifying as female.

“In my own experience it just seems like we’ve had to tour more, graft harder and shout louder just to get a minimum of attention from the gatekeepers of the industry” offers an exasperated Garcia.

As a result, ‘Louder’ offers a euphoric catharsis of that frustration which is epitomised in lines such as “Biting on my tongue forever/Forever I choke back on all of my needs”. The music itself delivers pop hooks and shimmering synths that show an evolution of the Twist Helix sound. At times, it seems to draw in a combo of modern-era OMD with a slight nod to Marina.

As ever, Twist Helix demonstrate a knack for soaring pop which is matched here with a rallying call for female artists everywhere. Garcia’s soaring vocal delivery sends a clear message: “Do I have a choice?/Not one of the boys.”

Louder is out now on Paul Back Music.

Twist Helix are performing live on 28th March at NXTGN Festival, 3rd April at Silicon Dreams for Threshold, 4th April at the Lending Room, Leeds (alongside PSYDOLL) and 26th June at Springkell Live.

Photo Credit: Jay Dawson (Shutter Productions).