Following up last year’s debut EP Dogs and Gods, London-via-New Zealand artist October and the Eyes today unleashes her second set, Who Upset You?. It displays the artist continuing to grow in confidence, both lyrically and sonically, leaving us in no doubt why she was picked to support Yves Tumor on tour earlier this year.
She tactfully combines industrial sounds with psychedelic production, all to support her words and voice, which are by turns pointed, scathing and alluring. It’s pop, but for the tough-skinned – those who want to love, but aren’t afraid of a fight if they perceive wrongdoing or arrogance.
It makes for a deeply compelling and engrossing 18 minutes, so we’re delighted that October has agreed to take us track by track through the dense and delightful Who Upset You?.
01. “Jack Black Must Die”
Jack Black could be the ultimate martyr no? Our imperfect, unholy anti-hero who must die for the sins of the world and pay the debt of mankind’s transgressions so that we might be righteous in death. Any comparisons to real life figures are definitely not coincidental.
“Spiral” is about a pretty weird friendship I once held. In fact I don’t even know if I’d call it a friendship in hindsight! I think because I ended up loathing the person so much it became pretty compelling writing material. A real one of a kind person and not in a good way… I mean just that constant pendulum between sweet and soured intentions. I wanted the song to sound in constant flux, with reverberating, metallic percussion that felt like it could spiral out of control at any moment.
03. “When I Was Your Girl”
This song ruminates on my former lover and life spent in our Queen Street flat back in Auckland, New Zealand. We always hosted these debauched parties – dancing on our dining table, playing music too loudly, filling the room with smoke and trying to mask the scent with our favourite Curio Noir parfum “Tobacco Nights”. I felt so angered writing this – I was really bruised by the whole experience of that relationship ending the way it did. I guess now it’s a bitter sweet meditation on a love now lost but not forgotten.
04. “Who Upset You?”
Inspired by a rather hilarious and unfortunate encounter at Chiltern Firehouse – look, it’s my own fault that subjected myself to that kind of environment in the first place. Central west London baffles, humours and scares me and the people who inhabit it are some of the worst I’ve met.
Tax the rich, kill your egos and most importantly, fuck the Tories.
05. “Walk The Line”
Actually the oldest track on the record – I wrote this a few years ago in the hospital after receiving a spinal tap due to a meningitis scare. 13cm of pure needle pierced so deeply into your back bone. Awful. I wouldn’t wish a spinal tap on my worst enemy. Or maybe I would.