Band-tastic: Summer Camp

Categories: CD Preview

Elizabeth Sankey and Jeremy Warmsley
​Initially filled with mystery and intrigue, indie pop/lo-fi duo Summer Camp bust onto the scene in 2010 with their dreamy, bedroom pop -- much to the delight of the blogoshpere. No one quite knew exactly who the duo was or where they hailed from --  Chicago was mentioned as a hometown, as well as possibly Sweden. Those ruminations were all put to rest, however, when Summer Camp was revealed as London duo Jeremy Warmsley, an accomplished singer/songwriter with two albums to his name, and Elizabeth Sankey, a journalist who had worked with NME and Platform. It seems the mystery was due to both Warmsley and Sankey, who admitted they didn't think their project was going to go public.

Thank god they decided to share their music with the masses. Their take on indie pop vacillates between nostalgia-filled and just plain dark and creepy -- in plenty a good way.

Take, for instance, the latest song from Summer Camp to hit the Internet -- "Better Off Without You." It's a light, bubbly affair that would sound right in place in a Brat Pack movie soundtrack. Elizabeth Sankey's vocals rival those of Bethany Cosentino of Best Coast, Alaina Moore of Tennis and Madeline Follin of Cults -- but with a decidedly darker vocal style. It's easy to call Summer Camp a throwback band, as their sound straddles a couple of decades, yet there's an edge to their music -- an undeniable contrast -- that separates them from their contemporaries.

"I Want You," from the duo's forthcoming debut album, hit the Internet this past March, overflowing with that trademark contrast Summer Camp so effortlessly provides. When Sankey sings, "If I could I'd kiss your lips so hard / Your entire face would bruise / Write your name in blood on every wall / It would make the evening news," it's easy to tell the song carries a darker, quasi-creepy tone. Complimented by a synth that sounds like it was borrowed from the 1981 Police album Ghost In The Machine, "I Want You" is truly a bizarrely enjoyable song -- one you are forced to enjoy lest Sankey actually wrote it about you.

Summer Camp's as-yet unnamed debut album is due out in the next few months on the duo's own Apricot Recordings imprint, with some help from Moshi Moshi. Thanks in large part to the songs "Better Off Without You" and "I Want You," it'd be impossible to try and forecast just what the album will sound like, but I can say one thing -- it is already very hotly anticipated. 

Please enjoy this video for the "Round The Moon," taken from their 2010 Young EP:

SUMMER CAMP - Round the Moon from Paddy Power on Vimeo.

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