Ethereal, exploratory, and unexpected, English Teacher’s debut EP is a bitesize promise of exciting things to come. Surprises lurk around every corner, as the band delve masterfully into building energy through texture, telling stories with both sound and poetic lyricism. The EP opens on a note that summarises everything so wonderful about the rest of it: ‘Polyawkward’ is a tentative, intricate construction of melodies that symbiotically blend underneath Lily Fontaine’s sinuous, spoken delivery. It’s a slow-burner, but when it heats up, it’s white-hot and intense. The moody guitar meanderings and offbeat vocal musings are English Teacher’s weapons of choice, building into a series of snapshots of moments that are almost realistic but not quite. ‘Mental Maths’ dissolves from a simple narration of a late-night shopping trip into a horrifying, swirling funhouse mirror of anxiety, jolting rhythms evoking the panic attack feeling as aptly as a lyrical metaphor would have. But English Teacher do not depend solely on either sound or spoken words, and it’s demonstrated nowhere more clearly than on ‘Yorkshire Tapas’, the ultimate flex of Lily’s captivating poetry falling into English Teacher’s always-evocative instrumental flow.
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