Single Review: Jockstrap – Concrete Over Water
Online Music Editor George Ward reviews the new single and video from experimental duo Jockstrap.
Jockstrap are an experimental duo from London. They are a fairly new name on the scene but have spent the last four years releasing singles and EPs that span from poppy and beautiful to experimental and harsh.
You may know Jockstrap without even realising it, as their lead singer, Georgia Ellery, plays violin with Black Country, New Road. This, is where the comparisons end however. Jockstrap is very much its own beast.
While I have loved all of Jockstrap’s EPs up to now, I can’t help wanting more. The sounds of their EPs are so complete and confident that it’s not difficult to imagine them producing a fantastic album. Hopefully, with the release of last year’s insane track ’50/50′ and now ‘Concrete Over Water’, we could be finally getting what we want.
‘Concrete Over Water’ perfectly sums up everything that is brilliant about Jockstrap. It features Georgia Ellery’s gorgeous vocals, Taylor Skye’s completely unique production and a blending of genres that shouldn’t work but does.
The track opens with glitchy, reversed vocals before opening up into an ethereal verse, featuring only an electric organ and Ellery’s vocals. When she sings “I live in the city”, we are immediately sucked back into the world of Jockstrap. Anyone familiar with the duo’s EP Wicked City knows that the city is one of their favourite themes. It feels nice to be somewhat familiar before we’re inevitably thrown in a different direction.
Both the vocals and the instrumental in the verses are beautiful. The vulnerability of Georgia’s voice paired with the mellow chords of Taylor are hypnotic.
the duo have complete control over us.
As the track builds towards its chorus, the duo have complete control over us. A quiet beat slowly builds in, interspersed with strangely sampled cheers and glitchy sound effects. When the beat kicks in completely, it’s joined by violins and some seriously frantic synths. This drop feels more than deserved after the build up.
Structurally, the track is fairly standard. After this chaotic chorus, the sound is stripped back again before blowing up yet again. And while the shift in sound isn’t quite as exciting or unexpected as ‘The City’ or ’50/50′, it is the subtle details that make ‘Concrete Over Water’.
Jockstrap jump from little glitches, glimmering synths, a lovely intimate lo-fi piano section and a seriously danceable beat that all come together to keep us both engaged and on our toes.
a blending of genres that shouldn’t work but does.
The video, directed by Eddie Whelan and Jockstrap themselves, is equally mesmerising. It features both Georgia and Taylor playing a range of characters with a bizarre circus aesthetic and some hypnotic lighting. The movement sequences are very well done and Georgia Ellery has as much control over the video as she does the song. It perfectly sums up their sound.
Catch Jockstrap at Dot To Dot Festival, Bristol on 28th May or on their UK tour this autumn.