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$25 advance | $30 day of show | $99 VIP
Best friends since the age of 11, Braeden Lemasters, Cole Preston, and Dylan Minnette (the members of Wallows), have spent most of their lives obsessing over music together, steadily gathering a musical vocabulary that’s expansive and erratic and wildly eclectic. On their full-length debut Nothing Happens, the L.A.-based trio puts that vocabulary to work and draws from infinite inspirations: scores to Spike Jonze movies, the Beatles’ most rhapsodic digressions, bedroom pop and lo-fi hip-hop and ’70s post-punk. The result is an album that’s endlessly unpredictable, yet somehow as familiar and deeply felt as the world inside your head.
Following the breakout success of 2017 debut single “Pleaser,” Wallows embarked on a headlining national tour and soon inked a deal with Atlantic Records. In April 2018, they put out Spring and won praise from the likes of TIME and Stereogum, with the EP hitting #15 on Billboard’s Vinyl Albums chart. Named a Critical Cut on SiriusXM’s Alt Nation, Spring’s lead single “Pictures of Girls” reached #1 on the alternative specialty radio chart, then landed at #4 on the year-end chart. Wallows also made their television debut with “Pictures of Girls,” taking the stage on The Late Late Show with James Corden and introducing the world to their impassioned live performance. After the release of their EP, Wallows appeared at major festivals like Lollapalooza, Austin City Limits, Camp Flog Gnaw Carnival, Life Is Beautiful, and Voodoo Music + Arts Experience as a way to head into their debut album campaign.
Wallows has now released the debut Nothing Happens which has already accrued over 50 million streams, and the band is finishing up a sold-out worldwide headline tour. Following their 2018 television debut on The Late Late Show with James Corden the band has taken the stage on several live television shows including The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, The Late Late Show with James Corden again, as well as Le Quotidien, and ZDFNeo Magazin Royal internationally.
For every sibling band forged in rivalry, many others mount an unassailable genetic argument for keeping the music in the family. The latter is assuredly the case with Penelope Isles, a brother-sister-centred alt-rock quartet from Brighton (via Isle of Man/Devon) whose debut album, Until the Tide Creeps In, is released through Bella Union this summer. Formed around the chemistry between dual songwriters Jack and Lily Wolter, the quartet’s expansive DIY mix of translucent dream-pop, fuzz-rock guitars and indie-psych flushes comes lovingly dipped in exquisite harmonies and lustrous melodies: a combination so intuitive, you’d think it was in their blood.
Crisp and woozy, blissful and biting, it’s an album deepened by shared experience: experiences of, in Jack’s words, “leaving home, moving away, dealing with transitions in life and growing up. We are six years apart, so we had a different experience of some of this, but we share a similar inspiration when writing music. Family, leaving home, disconnection and connection all ring bells!”
As Jack puts it, nice and succinctly, “It's cool to have two songwriters in the band because I love her songs so much!” Born in Devon and raised on the Isle of Man, the Wolters’ bonds were strengthened by separation when Jack moved away to study art at university at 19. As he puts it, wryly, “By the time I moved home Lily was not so much of an annoying younger sister anymore and had grown up and started playing in bands and writing songs. We soon became very close. I had written some songs, so we started a band called Your Gold Teeth. We toured a bit and then Lily left for Brighton to study songwriting. A couple of years later I moved down and we started Penelope Isles together.”
The quartet is completed by Jack Sowton and Becky Redford, who studied music and played in a three-piece with Lily in Brighton. When Lily came home for holidays, the idea of forming a new band rapidly developed. Though Jack and Lily write separately, their disparate songs were chucked into a shared pot and Penelope Isles surfaced, fuelled by a passion for DIY alt-rock and all those who sail its seas: Pavement, Deerhunter, Pixies and Tame Impala number among notable influences, alongside Radiohead and The Thrills.
Produced by Jack, the album was co-mixed by Iggy B (whose credits include The Duke Spirit, John Grant, Spiritualized and Lost Horizons) in London’s Bella Studios with a homegrown aesthetic and live clarity as guiding principles. The Line of Best Fit, DIY and Steve Lamacq (who hosted a recent Isles’ gig at SXSW for BBC6 Music) have all championed Isles’ bracing live form, where ‘Gnarbone’ has emerged as a show-stopper. “I wrote that song in a tiny cupboard room when I lived in Cornwall,” says Jack, “and it's funny to think how it's grown into such a beast.” From close-knit family ties to world stages, Penelope Isles’ growth curve is fast becoming a surge.
Higher Ground Ballroom
1214 Williston Road
South Burlington, VT, 05403