“The track is a blast of energy and swagger, idle frustration and personal reflection”
‘Blu’ is the latest single from the shoegaze outfit Pastel, succeeding their debut releases of ‘She Waits For Me’ and ‘Deeper Than Holy’. Drawing influences from pioneers of the British rock scene, such as The Stone Roses and The Verve, Pastel are made up of Manchester cousins Jack and James Yates on vocals and rhythm guitar, Dubliner Aaron Tormey on lead guitar and drummer Rhys Wheeler and bassist Liam O’Shea hailing from South Wales.
‘Blu’ opens with a floating riff, echoing the twinkling guitar vibes of The Stone Roses ‘Waterfall’. The track is a blast of energy and swagger, with the rhythm and lead guitars combining to generate a fuzz of 90’s Mancunian nostalgia, interwoven with a psychedelic lyrical vibe. In their Spotify bio, the band note Hunter S. Thompson’s iconic novel Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas as one of their influences, and ‘Blu’ wouldn’t feel out of place underscoring Raoul Duke and Dr. Gonzo in their adrenaline-fuelled journey to Las Vegas.
The track’s lyrics explore idle frustration and personal reflection: ‘I was waiting for something, but I had nothing, nothing to lose,’ and a euphoric, climactic vocal build-up of ‘It’s getting better, and higher, it’s getting better’. The track leaves the listener craving more, with the fade out repetition of ‘higher and higher and higher’, it feels like a three minute build, ready to hit the bursting point. ‘Blu’ is another chapter in the promising rise of Pastel, and an energetic and confident strut for the up-and-coming band.
Words: Benedict Shirley