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Album Review: Bitch Falcon – Staring At Clocks

Intriguing Irish trio Bitch Falcon seize the moment while Staring At Clocks…

Dublin residents Bitch Falcon have taken their time to get here. The trio have spent six years releasing singles and cultivating an impressive live reputation, only now moulding their evident songwriting nous into the shape of a debut album. But playing the long game has paid dividends, as Staring At Clocks is a convincing introduction to a band delivering a distinctive sound with confidence and power.

Most of Bitch Falcon’s tunes are built on a solid foundation of rumbling rhythms from bassist Barry O’Sullivan and drummer Nigel Kenny, leaving plenty of space for the authoritative presence of frontwoman and founder Lizzie Fitzpatrick. I’m Ready Now finds her grungy guitar fuzz augmented with post-punk textures, while on Turned To Gold she sets the controls for a deep headspace of shimmering shoegaze. 

What really sets this bunch apart, however, is Lizzy’s voice, emerging from the heart of their cavernous sound in a way that’s both alluringly ethereal and primally potent. On Sold Youth or single Gaslight, her vocals carry trace elements of various foremothers: punk priestess Siouxsie Sioux, Elizabeth Fraser of Scottish dream-pop innovators Cocteau Twins, maybe even countrywoman Sinead O’Connor at her rawest. 

These comparisons might suggest that the clocks Bitch Falcon are staring at stopped some time around 1987, and it’s certainly true that there’s something of that era’s cobwebbed romanticism to their sound. But it’s also characterised by an immediacy, as heard on Damp Breath or How Did I Know, that cuts through to the modern world as clearly as any present-day punks. Staring At Clocks is the sound of a band whose time has undoubtedly come. 

Verdict: 4/5

For Fans Of: Siouxsie & The Banshees, Wolf Alice, Curve 

Staring At Clocks is released on November 6 via Small Pond.

READ THIS: 17 emerging Irish artists you need to hear right now

Posted on November 3rd 2020, 11:17a.m.
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