Singled Out: Esper Scout
So writing this at the point of releasing 'Shed Some Light' we've known each other for almost ten years, well three out of four of us. Meeting in Manchester, Rebecca, Kirsty and myself formed our first band in my parents' garage, beginning our musical lives slap-bang in the middle of a rock n' roll cliché, except ours had a drum riser fashioned from cunningly acquired builders materials. Lou found her way to our newly inhabited Leeds base (Hut 57) in 2010, reassuring us with cymbal, snare and kick hits that we chose wisely to move to the city.
Most of our songs have been brought to life in the Hut's basement and Shed Some Light was no exception. After noticing a move away from the catchier, more youthful sounding songs which we'd learnt our instruments playing, in a sense becoming more musically contemplative and progressive, there was a silent communication between us to again have something a bit more 'instant'. The 'uppers' in the live set, the dessert to the main course of what would become our 7 minute long 'Gaps in the Border Fence'. At practice one night I tuned my low 'E' string down to a 'C' and the song's main riff instantly found itself, followed by the chord progression and driving beat which we cultured together as a band. The two releases (Shed and Gaps) could be said to draw from alternate parts of our musical personality, both of which are equally important to us for different reasons. It's been part of our set for over a year and is the song which gets the loudest reaction live. Our decision to re-record and give the track a proper release owes a lot to requests from people at gigs.
Like many, for me lyric writing is compulsive and often lines bounce into my head as if I'd just walked into them (mostly when I least expect it). As such it's not something I try to give much scrupulous thought to beyond phrasing and the usual tidying-up of lines, through concern that it'll get shy and run off (which it bloomin' does!) When thinking about it 'Shed Some Light' deals with identity and perceptions; that old meta-narrative of 'is who you think you are the same as what is projected to other people and how far can you take it before you lose yourself entirely to the beast?' Putting it into context, the year prior to and months after writing the song were heavily consumed with this subject. Typically it was easier to identify in the people around me rather than myself, 'picture yourself the falsely accused' points fingers at the denial in people but inevitably the hand turns back on itself with 'I have got to try, to get out from the inside'.
The song is a highlight for us in the live set and a welcome reminder of the benefits of putting a mirror up to yourself every once in a while.
Hearing is believing. Now that you know the story behind the song, listen for yourself with a free download and a stream of the video right here!