THEY’RE enigmatic and hardly known in their home county but Cornwall’s sister duo Hockeysmith are the darlings of the blogosphere.
The stunning video for new song But Blood dropped this week and was soon swooned over by the likes of Spin, Dazed & Confused, Clash magazine, This Is Fake DIY and more.
It’s understandable – But Blood and the rest of their sparse catalogue is the most exciting I’ve heard from a Cornish act since the heyday of Marvin And The Gayes and My Elvis Blackout about six years ago.
Where those bands floundered on the cusp of record company interest and national recognition, all the signs point to Annie and Georgie Hockeysmith becoming the first critical and commercial success to come out of Kernow for quite some time.
The But Blood film is directed by designer and photographer Davy Evans (who previously helmed the xx’s Chained and Angels videos, as well as the Coexist cover art). It features footage filmed through water using reflections and mirrors with almost Jackson Pollock-like paint splashes, drips and ripples.
It’s the perfect visual realisation of the extraordinary song where the girls’ ethereal voices mesh with swathes of guitar feedback, a throbbing bassline and rave-lite electronics, building to a punishing yet exhilarating climax. The result sounds genuinely new and vital.
File next to fellow sonic explorers such as Grimes, My Bloody Valentine, A R Kane and Cocteau Twins, though they sound like none of them.
But Blood is from their debut EP, which will be released through Double Denim Records in May.
The sisters, who are based in Maenporth, Falmouth, saw a low-key release for their debut single in 2013; a double A-side featuring the spectral, choral Now I Want To and Let’s Bang, which belies its title and isn’t some nosebleed techno thump, but a mirror of Warpaint's disco-goth, which fades out at the minute mark inexplicably and wonderfully before continuing in its hypnotic 4AD-down-the-disco way.
Hockeysmith know how to play the media-savvy marketing game in these days of mass information overload. Dropping a song online every few months, playing a handful of guerilla gigs around Falmouth and a couple of artier affairs in London, mystery still surrounds them, only adding to the excitement generated by songs like Meanwhile.
The only chance a larger audience in the South West has had to see how all this magic translates in a live setting is when they supported Totnes’ Matthew And Me at the suitably underground Carnglaze Caverns late last year.
If you’re in London on Thursday, March 6, you can see the sisters at the Waiting Room.
In the meantime check their songs out here: soundcloud.com/hockeysmith