Brighton-based trio CIEL are making waves with their wonderfully reassuring shoegazey dream pop. Their debut EP 'Movement' lands today (Friday, 10th April), and it's like a hug for your ears - perfect for filling space in these ridiculously quiet spring days, or nursing an Easter weekend hangover. Here, the band talk us through each of the four songs, track by track.
Gentle and fuzzy dream-pop gem 'The Shore' is CIEL's debut single, and after the release in January, it soon got the support of BBC 6 Music's Steve Lamacq as well as playlisted by Amazing Radio. The track is about not being able to seize the moment, being stuck and desperately wanting more out of life. "It is the first song I wrote for the EP, quite a while ago already, when I was going through a period when I had the constant feeling I was still waiting for something big to happen before my life would 'really' begin. I felt I was not being able to move forward through life and felt really frustrated. In a way, the song is a reminder to not only live towards the things that are happening in the future but to enjoy the moment too. In the song, I ask myself what it actually is that I am waiting for, as everything is already good how it is." 'The Shore' is optimistic and wistful at the same time, channelling a thoughtful contemplation in which feelings of hope and hopelessness exist right next to each other. Hindriks' tender lyrics are accompanied by delicate vocal harmonies, kaleidoscopic guitar soundscapes and snappy beats.
The most uptempo track on the EP, 'Days', exhibits a shoegazey sound, merged with post-punk, dark dream pop and driven guitars that are predominating the song. Hindriks' introspective lyrics are about a feeling of distance from other people, letting go of this and opening up. "The song is about a feeling that you don't entirely fit into this world. I always felt a bit like the quiet weirdo and as if I was hiding a lot. The song is about a turning point, when you think, fack it, and you are able to open up. Living in Brighton helped me a lot with that; I feel like I am fitting better into this town." 'Days' sounds powerful and hopeful, and suits the sunny days of spring and summer.
SAME OLD TIMES WITH U
'Same Old Times With U', the third track of CIEL's debut EP 'Movement', is an otherworldly alt-pop gem about a moment of looking back at a past love, and the nostalgic feeling that comes with that. It is good how it is now, and you look back on it with joy, but at the same time, it can give this weird gloomy feeling that you can't really place. You almost experience moments from the past again, but just momentary. Hindriks' mesmeric voice carries the song while it evolves from chapter to chapter, letting go of any traditional pop structures and bursting into an instrumental outro in which the lush guitar sounds take the lead.
IT'S NOT ALL THE SAME
The EP ends in tender love ballad 'It's Not All The Same', which delicately tells the story of being in love, but being unable to be with this person because of the fear of being with someone again and continually making up your mind about this. "In the song, I am telling the person about my fears, and I am asking for understanding and to be soothed."