very much a marmite band…
An update to the 365 from The Ringmaster review
Last August we gave you a first look and insight into the epic new project from Reverse Family. Starting the following October, the plan with 365 was to release 52 EPs as one a week for a whole year, each of their songs representing a single day in the inspiring life of its creator.
Reverse Family is the solo project of Dermot Illogical, though you may know him as Andreas Vanderbraindrain, the frontman of British outfit The Tuesday Club. With its brainchild embracing the various talents of others, Reverse Family first grabbed keen attention with debut album My Songs About Life Mid Crisis in 2016. In so many ways 365 is a whole new ball game for the band, a project taking the listener into the heart and thoughts, not forgetting darkness, Dermot personally experienced as he came to terms with personal despair through the death of a great friend and band mate, going through divorce, dealing with the serious illness of both parents and other traumas taking Dermot to the edge.
Since that first collection of songs sent our way to announce the release of 365, the project has been in full swing with some more teasers sent for our ears to explore. So time to give you more insight into a collection of songs which we can say to date has grabbed the imagination and pleasured ears in varying persistently enjoyable ways by focusing on a few more which have recently been unveiled.
Day 20 provides The Suns rays are just like birthdays, an inviting stroll built around a great post punk bassline as crispy beats align to the distinctive tones of Dermot.
Reflecting on the radiance of the weather as emotions rise and fall, the track is a thickly infectious affair nagging away at ears like a pleasurable itch.
There is great diversity to the sound and personas of songs with 365 too,
Was I a good man (day 15) swinging along with a sixties garage pop hues
as guitars offer their psych kissed jangle while No Reason to run (day 6) has the rhythmic shuffle
of a King Trigger aligned to an off kilter twee/ indie pop croon.
Hugging a melody which enthrals in its nagging simplicity, the track is simply mesmeric, almost shamanic in its virulent enterprise.
Equally irresistible is the bricks and mortar snarl of Sunshade City (day 21).
It has a gnarly tone around the pulsating shadowy lure of the bass, both at the heart of its post punk/industrial examination
while with matching success We Got It (day26) sees Reverse Family embrace early Adam and The Ants
textures in its resourceful punk dance.
With so many tracks unveiled already it is hard to pick a favourite but this always figures in any contemplation as too does
the twang lilted Keep Being the Good Guy (day 25).
Its country punk tinge and another irresistible bass line and tone court the ever virulent vocal delivery of Dermot, it all uniting in one seriously catchy persuasion.
Seductive acoustic discord flirts from within Dark pop (day 7) and insatiable askew pop punk
is bred through the rousing antics of Pay the price (day 3) while
School gate politics (day 64) is a prowling harassment with menacing shadows and post punk intimation,
kind of like a Bowie meets Artery contemplation.
All three are additional pinnacles in the lofty landscape of tracks released to date and definite favourites with us among so many more.
It has to be said though that Movin’ forward (day 74) is the cream of the crop,
its repetitious swing and hook lined lure simply irresistible; a real ear worm as dark as it is vibrant.
There are numerous potent ways to get into 365, such as
the delicious lithe tenebrific pop ‘n’ roll of Your wandering hands (day 82)
but Movin’ forward is addiction in the waiting.
There is so much more to discover already with 365, aside from our glimpses, with EPs released currently standing at 19 as you read, and all there for your exploration, @ http://reversefamily.co.uk/ with plenty more adventure to come which you can keep up with through the Perfect Pop Co-Op magazine. 365 is DIY majesty with drama to be found at every turn and so much pleasure too.
Read our introduction to Reverse Family and 365 @ https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2017/08/26/day-by-day-with-reverse-family/
Pete RingMaster 06/02/2018
‘Reverse Family, The’ – ‘Sampler 03’
Genre: ‘Punk/New Wave’ – Release Date: ’26th January 2018′
Our Rating: 7/10
“The Wedding Present may have released a single a month back in 1992, but this pales against the ‘365 days of sound’ project by Namke Communications in 2015, and last year’s
insanely ambitious 365 songs released between October 2017 and October 2018 by lo-fi experimental punk group Reverse Family.”
“‘Movin’ Forward’ is the lead track from this latest four-track sampler, which features cuts from days 63, 64, 74, and 82. Unfortunately, the CD-R I’ve been sent for review is blank and I can’t find any of the four featured tracks on-line. But what I can track down by the band across the various outlets online is seriously good. Unpretentious, direct, low-budget punk with sass. What else do you need?”
Dermot Illogical an insight by Johnny Bruschetta…
ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDLY WITH WORDS… THE 365
By Johnny Bruscehetta Of the Free, Independent Observer, Suffolk – November 2017.
It has become a commonplace, the received wisdom over the past 40 years or so,
to say – and believe – that Art and the Artist, “has a duty to provoke”, or “to confront”,
or even “to be political.” This is nonsense, ignorant crap, and has
always been so. Artists have no duty to anyone but themselves; are answerable
to no-one but themselves, and to whatever it is they have to express, which must
be expressed without any compromise whatsoever.
The world then ignores it or takes note of it as the world pleases. And the Artist
goes on with his or her work regardless.
I was talking about this and about Dermot/Andreas (and his various alter egos, Reverse family and the Tuesday club amongst them) and his latest venture reviewed below ‘The 365’ with Socrates the other day and showing him the draft of this review and asked him what he thought of it. Perusing it he said that what I’d written was indeed the case.
“You’re sure?” I asked him.
“Bloody certain, youth,” he replied, and instructed me to get it finished.
I have listened, then, to a CD, the first of a series which contains 365 songs, written one a day over 365 consecutive days, a year of his life, his experience, recorded in songs which are always personal. An incredibly ambitious project even for so prolific an artist, but it is now complete. It is not, however a diary, or journal, being less abstracted and detached, less temporally measured and correspondent than that; it is rather a rendering of an account of a past and present together, of the emotions of both, of the artists life as he is living it.
“That must be necessarily true of all artists and their work,” Socrates said.
“Why say it?” But I said I felt there was a need to. If this work in it’s entirety is a simple, pure case of life becoming Art, Art becoming life, then in other ways too Dermot seems to me a harkening-back and genuinely and sincerely so: A most uncompromising artist; single-minded; working constantly and making no compromise whatsoever. If his work should earn him any money and recognition then so much the better – these give the boost to well-being and confidence that all artists need. But if he doesn’t he’ll go on just the same anyway, cutting this solitary, often lonely path… because this is who he is, and this is what he does, and in the end he knows this is his lot. And it is a path of sincerity and integrity, the path therefore of the true artist. What Dermot wants to say and has to say he puts into his songs rather than speaks, and puts it into performing them. Again this is hardly by choice… it is who is. Likewise as if physically magnetised, he is repelled from small-talk, from “dinner-party conversation”, “from chatter”: cursed or blessed, he is unable constitutionally to be anywhere near it. He won’t do it and can’t do it.
“Blessed,” Socrates observed. “An overcoming of the Will to live?”
I put this point to Schopenhauer on our walk last week, but he was concentrating intently, and I didn’t press him.
To me, there is in Dermot (though it is not evident in his life outside his creative work) a great and constant energy directed towards his creativity, a great frustration and tension always: active and aggressive in the psychological meaning of the words, and in same sense perhaps a true sublimation happening.
The first EP – 01 of seven songs – or this first seven days, or week contain songs which are for me stronger and more heartfelt than any I’ve heard from him previously. His musical influences have inevitably helped to shape and colour his own work and are evident again on this EP – but as much as I can in the often hypnotic rhythms and beats and vocal phrasings hear an influence from ‘Glam’ or ‘Punk Rock’, I am reminded most, as I am in all the work of his that I have know, of Beefheart… those pared-back and raw and repetitive beats, phrases and rhythms, both foreground and background sometimes mere details of rhythms, beats, minute layers sounding again and again, holding the structure together… the definitely, yes, quirkiness of the lyrics sometimes… but in the end, most of all in the way Dermot has re-created re-worked his own musical influences for the time – and the life – he lives in, as Captain Beefheart recreated, and reworked the blues for his.
Purely my own taste, I was drawn particularly to day 3 – Gold in the sky blue in my heart, the beginning of which hit the 60’s heart of me and also to Dark Pop (day 7) in which I loved the acoustic guitar vocals.
Is there an unresolved dilemma in Dermot and his work, one between performance and “content”? Does each – for any performer – inevitably obscure and dilute, subtract from, the other? I don’t know, but there is perhaps a gradual natural movement towards more solo performances ?
And while I’m writing this, and you’re reading it Dermot continues to compose music, to write songs, without any high-profile; prolific and unseen, he is wandering about the innards of it all, the viscera; carrying: “a link in the chain”, as another great hoped for himself. And as another of Dermot’s inspirations said: “I couldn’t have worked for any other boss: I only ever wanted to work from myself.”
In the Club Magazine features…
Live and Unplugged in Woking…
Dave and Dermot took a trip to Woking on Monday night for an unplugged session and interview on Radio Woking, thanks to Kieran Cooke for having us on… you can listen again here…
The Sunday Experience 365 review
Posted on September 27, 2017
Might take a bit of explaining this next one. Started off with a curiously intriguing exchange of emails with the Reverse Family, seems these dudes are shortly, well next week to be a bit more precise, about to embark on a seriously ambitious release schedule, in fact I’ll tell you what, best if I let Andy himself take up the baton and explain in person ….
‘ …. this set of releases starts on October 2nd and sees me (Reverse Family) putting out a 7-track ep every Monday for a year. 52 eps in all – 365 songs (one ep will have 8 tracks so it all adds up and that’s it. It will be available through our perfect pop co-op label and all of the Usual digital places. There will also be a monthly sampler on nub records (a bite size ‘best of’) to people afford a purchase. I intend to do a physical release at some point but it will be expensive so need to get interest in it first, this will include diary entries for the year too!’
.. indeed, at that point, I too had to re-read just to make sure my eyes weren’t playing up. I’m thinking like you probably, that this either the mindset of someone bitten by the creative bug or taken a knock to the head which once the bruising has relented, will no doubt wonder what the hell he’s let himself in for. Anyway, during the course of those email exchanges, we were suddenly asked, what’s your favourite number, us being awkward plumbed for four – 6, 11, 23 and 29 in case you ask. Okay then, the response came, I’ll burn those tracks to a CD and get it off to you post haste. Days later a CD arrives, handwritten note an all, with not three but ten tracks peeled from the Reverse Family sonic draw pot. In a former life, with the Scratch, we’d always suspected that Andy had wiled away the days fully versed in the ways of the Buzzcocks and Magazine (in fact that same dayglo dalliance is still ever present, not least on the sharply acute power pop burn of the effervescently teased bubble grooved ‘was I a good man?’). Seems similar tropes come to play here, albeit suspiciously subtled by the impish appearance of Syd Barrett to the prickly palette, as curiously evidenced on the loosely dippy ‘we got it – supreme positivity’ here as though channelled through the viewfinder of Adam Ant c. ‘dirks wears white sox’. As said 10 tracks, a sampler therein plucked from a choice peppering taken from the first handful of planned EP’s. Very much reminiscent of AB Leonard’s mammoth ‘Octopus’ schedule from a few years ago and similarly toned. ‘no reason to run’ opens the proceedings, a track whose snakish garage haloed soft psych tilt is bleached with a distant nod to a certain Mr Hitchcock c. Soft Boys’ ‘underwater moonlight’ and something that finds itself somewhat contrasted by the drift like mellowing kaleidoscopia that peels from the deceptively warmly smoking ‘summer thunder’ which by these ears certainly has something of an Elephant 6 crookedness about its wares. Talking of kookiness or was it crookedness, simple kid is instantly called to mind with the arrival of the playfully minimalist ‘filth and lame’ while elsewhere there’s the insular dark heart ‘7pm’ which you feel, adored with weeping string arrangements might shine it with a Rialto like mastery, that’s not to say this doesn’t sting as it stands, cowered as it is by a heart heavy introspection. Superbly threaded with prowling pulsars, there’s a seductive wiring chic flavouring ‘sunshade city’ that had us of a mind to go rooting out our prized Wolfmen stash while the darkly weaving shadow torn cabaret that is ‘the bigger picture’, in truth the best thing here, slowly picks away at the scabs ushering in a chokingly edgy psychosis which had we not known better, might have hazarded a guess had fallen from the flip side of an early Bauhaus b-side. Glam draped reverbs drip from the ghostly Bolan-esque ‘the test’ while grooving amid the psychotropic purr of ‘the sun’s rays are like birthdays’ are spectral echoes of a youthful Psychic TV. So in answer to our opening question, obviously the creative bug option is afoot here, here’s to the next 355 tracks. www.reversefamily.co.uk
Thanks to Denise Parsons for having Dermot on Verulam Radio on Monday talking all things 365!
Thanks to Soundlab for their recent mini Q& A with our Dermot.
Read about it here:
WHERE WAS YOUR FIRST GIG AND HOW MANY PEOPLE WERE THERE?
It was at a cricket club, next door to a nudist park in the 80s. No idea of the attendance, it was the days of Lambrusco!
WHEN WAS YOUR LAST DAY OFF AND WHAT DID YOU DO WITH IT?
I never have a ‘day off’… if I did I’d be thinking about what needed to be done when I was back!
WHAT IS SOMETHING – APART FROM YOUR PHONE OR WALLET – THAT HAS TO BE IN YOUR VICINITY AT ALL TIMES?
WHICH SONG BY ANOTHER ARTIST DO YOU WISH YOU’D WRITTEN?
Too many. But the Public Image by PIL takes some beating
WHAT’S BEEN THE MOST SURREAL FAN MOMENT?
For me meeting Siouxsie and The Banshees who were sitting behind me at an Iggy Pop gig…
I’m proud I was brave enough to climb over the seats to give Siouxsie my demo cassette!
In the Club E-Zine 10 page special!
Big thanks to the Perfect Pop Co-Op for our inclusion in the new 10 page special feature on us in ‘In the Club’ issue 033. There are great insights inside on 365 by Roger Payne and Pete Ringmaster.
Big thanks to Pete Ringmaster for his fabulous synopsis of 365
Day by day with Reverse Family
We all have different outlets for extreme emotions be they bred in grief, frustration, anxiety or romance for example. For many an artistic avenue is the release from such overwhelming trespasses and so it is with Reverse Family who are about to unleash a daunting but we can already assure you irresistible adventure for ears.
The Reverse Family is the solo project of Dermot Illogical, someone probably better known right now as Andreas Vanderbraindrain, the frontman of British outfit The Tuesday Club. Towards the end of last year, he released acclaimed debut album My Songs About Life Mid Crisis, a collection of multi-flavoured lo-fi experimental goodness which continues to hang around in the imagination and passions like an inescapable itch. It was an introduction which commanded attention and breeds real anticipation for the next epic outing with Reverse Family.
Starting in October, Dermot is releasing 365, a project made up of 52 EPs released as one a week for a whole year. Before panicking, shouting impossible, or mistakenly thinking anything that massive has to be more filler than thriller let us declare that with the evidence of the sampler sent by the man our way in our hands, it is going to be an escapade taking ears and imagination on a helter-skelter of honest and emotionally raw but instinctively fun exploration; a journey given greater intimate potency by Dermot’s diary entry of that particular day by the way of ‘sleeve notes’.
The tracks making up the project were all recorded DIY style at home between Jan 1st2015 and Dec 31st 2015 with Dermot playing every instrument and sharing every syllable.
Everything heard is as played and recorded; no editing or tampering made with every song bred in heart and spontaneity. It is an organic air and array of textures which grips the imagination as much as the sounds themselves; a fly-on-the-wall like climate baring the same open heart as that of their creator.
The catalyst to the project was the death of Terry, the drummer of The Tuesday Club. His sad passing came just as the band was deservedly stirring bigger and bolder praise carrying spotlights, a time topped by the band supporting Toyah at The 02 Islington and releasing their most successful and critically acclaimed EP to date. It was a world crushing time for the band and especially for Dermot who was also coming to terms with divorce, life dictating and changing illnesses for both parents as well as the constant struggle of being self-employed. It was a time many would have buckled under but Dermot focused all the suffocating turbulence into his music and turned it into a creative quest, one which at times you feel probably completely took over his world but gave him a survival and now the listener a spark for pleasure and thoughtful contemplation.
As the tracks we have reveal there is no ‘woe is me’ self-pity fuelling the adventure. Yes, it scratches his open wounds at times and is not always sharing smiles but every moment is an open insight and reflection on his feelings across the evolving year of those challenges and the life around Dermot in St. Albans with plenty of knowing black humour involved along the way.
The first track swiftly grabbing years was Future son – The Twa Twa’s, (day 8) of the creative pilgrimage. Instantly it reminds of ‘My Songs About Life Mid Crisis’ with its post punk twang and Dirk Wears White Sox era Adam and The Ants like character. A gorgeous hook lurks within the angular clamour, Dermot’s vocal delivery a swinging flirtation matching the similar allure of bass. The structurally organic design of the track alone is a web of lust clasping shenanigans, the song in its whole a psyche infesting treat.
Some tracks have an even rawer sound and temptation than others, This house is empty (day 10) one which borders abrasive in sound but within its causticity is an instinctive funkiness which has the body bouncing and appetite eagerly exploring words and emotion. There is a sense of despair and also hope carrying new beginnings felt with the track, a conflict most of us are no strangers too at some point and can grab with nodding recognition.
The clutch of songs within the sampler show the great array of styles embraced by the Reverse Family sound, the outstanding I stand alone (day 13) a post punk natured infestation managing to sound like a mix of Fire Engines, Swell Maps and unsurprisingly The Tuesday Club with Dermot’s distinctive tones yet is unique in every pore while MP3 (day 310)is a junction box of sonic wires casting a Devo meets Pere Ubu scented discord over the imagination.
The darker, grungier Faded colours (day 336) offers melancholy at its most magnetic, In my head (day 337) sharing a sonically and emotionally haunting incursion on the senses as pained as it is corrosively elegant, and both songs continue the broadening maze of flavours and emotional tempestuousness within the sampler alone. Like many tracks, each is also a relatively brief encounter; fleeting moments in an unsettled and often unsettling day though Bad cartoon (day 343) stays a little longer with its melodically jangling and evocatively persuasive as Bowie-esque toning draws the listener with seductive ease into its own personal melancholy.
The punk ‘n’ roll of Do it just for me (day 344) hits the spot just as easily, its tenacious canter a gentle cacophony of guitar, rhythms, and voice while I built a new contraption (day 356) shares a broad grin in its post punk/art rock pop. The pair relish in the addictive prowess Dermot constantly finds in his minimalistic but oh so potent grooves and hooks, though he saves maybe the most addictive for Breathy graffiti (day 365), its electronic poking the kind of inescapable nagging lust was bred for.
So that gives a hint of what is in store for us once 365 begins revealing its heart in a few weeks.
It would be a little unrealistic to expect every one of the songs within the 52 EPs, each suggested to contain seven tracks, will hit the lofty heights of those on the sampler but do expect each to be the most honest and spontaneously shared temptations sure to intrigue and captivate like nothing else around today.
We for one just cannot wait!
The first of the 365 EPs will be released digitally from 2nd October 2017 via Perfect Pop Co-Op one a week through to the first week of October 2018 and samplers via Nub Country Records 1 per month for a year.