Childhood mates Neil Wood (vocals, guitar) and Jonathan Winship (drums) arranged to meet up and record together having spent the cold winter months locked away in their respective bedrooms in Sunderland and Liverpool listening to Leonard Cohen albums. The resulting brace of two track EP’s, Let’s Away From Here and The Brittle Bones of Let’s Away, catalogue every palpable human emotion from despair to hysteria through tales of ‘well dressed and drunk’ lovers and losing self control, all delivered in Neil’s mournful North-east brogue. Backed by yearning guitar riffs, softly humming basslines and sparse percussion; Let’s Away speak to the heart in devastating fashion. The duo have only performed one live set thus far, at this summer’s Generator Evolution Emerging showcase but they’re already on the radar of The Recommender, Crack In The Road and 6Music amongst others.
The gushing plaudits may seem confusing to some, considering the duo have barely played a note on stage but for those who have been privy to their music, Let’s Away have struck a chord in a very different way. They might choose to hide behind hazy press shots for now but their sensitive craft shines through for all to see on tracks like the bruising, Jarvis-influenced ‘You & I’ and post punk ballad ‘The Art of Self Control’ which finds a place somewhere between Interpol and Doves to solemnly snarl. There’s magic in this band and with just a little more confidence in their own mercurial ability, they could become the UK’s first band to wear their heart on their sleeves for reasons beyond record sales.
Let’s Away take to the stage again next month at Newcastle’s historic Lit & Phil library, where they will be backed by a stellar cast of North-east musicians including Jonny Hibbert and Josh Hawick of alt folk outfit Lilliput, Indian Summer’s Richard Smith and Neil Bassett of Hyde & Beast. Handkerchiefs at the ready everyone.