With this, his debut solo release, we’re treated to two contrasting tracks of lo-fi post punk.
The tape comes via the ever excellent Gob Nation. Waving Goodbye marries Joy Division-esque instrumentation with his David Byrne style vocals. Electronic beats combine with a Peter Hook bassline. Whirring synths and spacious guitars juxtapose the gloriously lo-fi production. The backing vocals, provided by Stacy Lavender, are reminiscent of Donnelly’s KAPUTT cohort Chrissy Barnacle. Her delivery, though, is somewhat softer than that of Barnacle. It’s a sleepy but brilliant slice of post punk that transports us to a bygone era.
Married To You Mind, by contrast, ramps up the energy. It’s much closer to Donnelly’s better known project. Still, it’s a different beast as it forgoes the skronking saxophone and head spinning time signatures. Donnelly’s delivery is more direct and strutting than on the first track. Fuzzy punk guitar chords are set against a guitar hook that (whisper it) recalls The Holy Bible era Manic Street Preachers. The waspy synths in the chorus push it more in the direction of 80s new wavers Plastics. It’s a frantic blast that’s over in under 2 minutes.
Both tracks out Donnelly’s charismatic vocals front and centre and, while the lo-fi aesthetic lends itself really well to these songs, it somewhat obscures exactly what Donnelly is ranting about. Despite this it’s a really exciting tape that certainly leaves us wanting to hear more. Donnelly has proved he has more colours to his palette. We recommend you snap it up.
Waving Goodbye/ Married To Your Mind is out now on cassette and digital via Gob Nation.