Posts Tagged ‘Wonderlust’

New Band Of The Week - Kid Wave Sound Like Lush On Diazepam

“There’s a track I wrote called ‘Baby Tiger’, which is about a dream I had last year,” explains Kid Wave’s frontwoman Lea Emmery, speaking from a park in Yorkshire during a break on the band’s tour with Palma Violets. “I had been feeling really down at the time, but then I had this dream where I was carrying a baby tiger around – just carrying it. And then I woke up… and I just felt amazing. Maybe it was a symbol that things were going to get better.”

New beginnings are a recurring theme with Kid Wave. Lea uprooted from her native Sweden to move to London in 2011 after becoming disillusioned with the indie scene on the country’s east coast; it was here in the UK that her dream-weaving grunge (think Lush on diazepam) found its feet. “I was playing in an all-girl punk band”, she explains, “but it all just felt a bit dead. There was no market for new rock music, the music they played on the radio was uninspiring, there were no gigs and there were no festivals. I just wanted to get out of there.”

It proved to be a fortuitous move for the 22-year-old. Taking up a course in sound engineering and spending the rest of her time recording demos on “GarageBand”, Lea was quickly snapped up by Heavenly Recordings just as the rest of the industry started knocking. “I started to get emails from people asking when we were going to plays gigs and I just said, ‘I dunno’, because I hadn’t even got a band together at that point. I had just moved over from a different country – I didn’t know anyone.”


Bringing new friends Serra Petale (drums), Mattias Bhatt (guitar) and Harry Deacon (bass) on board to complete the line-up, and with a stream of loud gigs behind them (“It’s a lot more rock’n’roll live,” she says), Kid Wave released their debut LP ‘Wanderlust’ this year. And as the sun-drenched fuzz of ‘Gloom’ and the blissed-out ‘All I Want’ make clear, it’ll be a sound that’s perfectly suited for a hazy summer.

BASED London
FOR FANS OF Lush, The Breeders
BUY IT NOW Album ‘Wonderlust’ on Heavenly Recordings


London based four piece Kid Wave’s debut album ‘Wonderlust’ is without doubt one of our favourite albums of 2015 so far.  It’s a stunning collection of songs and reaffirms our view that singer, songwriter, guitarist, and Kid Wave lynchpin Lea Emmery is one of the brightest new talents to emerge in recent years.  There’s a beautifully uncontrived openness and straightforwardness to Emmery’s literate dreamy compositions, combining melodic buoyancy with an overarching sense of wistful longing.  But rest assured this is not the place for agonised navel gazing and self-flagellation, there is no doom-laden introspection, rather a sense that here is somebody trying to assimilate their own experiences and make sense of their place in the world.

‘Wonderlust’ is perhaps an album that could only have been written at a certain time in your life, and although it’s refreshingly free of cynicism it is in no way naïvely optimistic.  However the underlying mood isone of celebration, conjuring up a sense that Emmery and her band cohorts reside in a world in which hope will always win out over gloom.  Musically Kid Wave combine classic guitar riffs with soaring blissed out pop hooks, evoking a youthful unconstrained ache for adventure, and discovery, whilst at the same time eliciting a sense of wistful nostalgia for those endless summers and limitless horizons when the possibilities seem infinite.


There’s nothing that remotely resembles a filler on the album –  Gloom despite the title is anything but, and is, in fact, one of the finest examples of life-affirming guitar pop and rock you’re likely to hear in this life or the next!  Honey is all driving propulsive splendour, I’m Trying To Break Your Heart is simply stunning, Sway is as hypnotic as it is majestic whilst Best Friend aches and shimmers with a yearning beauty that few songwriters can muster.

There’s no pretension, no arch agenda, Kid Wave aren’t here to push boundaries, break taboos, or f**k, with your head man, but they may well capture your heart.  They are content to write elegant beautifully crafted escapist music,  and what they have achieved with ‘Wonderlust’  is to produce an album that will surely resonate with anybody who has been young and dared to dream.They’ve also contrived to make this writer’s world an infinitely better place for the near forty-minute span of the album.  And sometimes y’know, that’s all you need.



Kid Wave are an indie rock quartet based in London. They have a pretty heavy mid-1990s college radio sound. You might say that they sound like Teenage Fanclub or The Breeders. You might also say that they sound like something more contemporary like Best Coast.

Though based in London, the band is half Swedish, a quarter English, and a quarter Australian. As a teenager, Lea Emmery (vocals/guitars) came to England from her family’s home in Norrköping, Sweden in order to “learn something about music”. Norrköping is a small city on the Baltic coast. sometimes referred to as “the Swedish Manchester”. Matthias Bhatt (guitar) is also from the same city. Emmery was studying sound engineering at college, where she met Perth native Serra Petale (drums). Harry Deacon (bass) who was a friend of a friend, and who is a Londoner, joined their lot to fully form Kid Wave.

Last autumn, the band released their debut EP Gloom via Heavenly Recordings, and they followed that this June 1 with their debut album “Wonderlust”.

Although this is my kind of thing,. With its fuzz, its throwback sound, and the tiny bit of dirt amid the meticulously crafted shimmering pop,


Kid Wave from London, Wonderlust. It’s an aptly-titled for an international band whose founding members’ wanderings lead them to congregate in the capital. Kid Wave began life as a solo when Lea Emmery relocated from Norrköping (a city sometimes referred to as “Sweden’s Manchester”) to London in 2011 at the age of 18. She knew no-one, had no band, no contacts. But she did have drive, vision and ambition – insane levels of it, in fact. Several years playing classical piano at a local college in Sweden had lead to a stint in an all-girl punk band and though that tenure was short-lived, there was simply no turning back. Noise beckoned.

What began life as solo demos soon morphed into Kid Wave when Mattias Bhatt, part of the same clique of indie kids back in Norrköping an now in London, signed up. From Perth, Australia, Serra Petale was teaching drums at a college where Lea was studying sound engineering and seemed “impossibly cool”. She was in. Bassist Harry Deacon was a friend-of-friends.

A clutch of early songs were recorded with Rory Atwell (Palma Violets, The Vaccines, Male Bonding) production, before Lea sent some music to Heavenly Recordings – “and no-one else”. Kid Wave had no management, no team of people fighting their corner. Just songs. Heavenly liked what they heard and signed the band in early 2014. It was, Lea laughs, that simple. The plan that she had when she moved to London with some clothes and a guitar was working remarkably well.

2014 saw Kid Wave playing shows with The Wytches, TOY, The Orwells, Childhood and more recently with Jimi Goodwin at the Heavenly 25 weekend in Hebden Bridge. In autumn 2014 they recorded Wonderlust at the magical analogue wonderland that is Eve Studio in Stockport with producer Dan Austin (Doves, Cherry Ghost). Beyond the studio the lashing rain and dark north-west nights were banished by the youthful exuberance and sugared sounds being created within.

Because Kid Wave sing escapist song of struggle, desire and yearning: songs born out of Lea’s lonely years as a teenager adrift in a foreign country, where the hope of musical success and a superhuman level of stubbornness were the only things stopping her from returning to the safety of the family home. There were, she says, anxieties. Plenty of those. Teenage dreams so hard to beat? Well – yes, actually. It’s a philosophy that still stands – that idea of music as a mood-altering, soul-saving outlet for bands and fans alike is alive and singing in the joyous rush of Kid Wave songs such as the breaking waves of sound on the jangling ‘All I Want’, the yearning ethereal pop of ‘Gloom’ or the chiming fuzzed-up pop riffs of ‘Wonderlust’.



Kid Wave are fast becoming my new favourite band, the “London-based quartet Kid Wave make an appealing style of guitar pop, fuzzy and warm, not really adhering to any particular trend.”
The international two girl/two boy quartet’s debut album Wonderlust is a crafted set of pop songs that bathe in the golden, restorative rays more commonly associated with life on the Californian coast rather than London, where Kid Wave reside. This is music that’s delivered with an uplifting sense of youthful wild abandon and imbued throughout with blissful surges of musical serotonin but with clear undercurrents of a wistful sense of melancholy too. Occasionally dark clouds obscure their sonic sunshine and there’s a nagging sense that no summer lasts forever.

Nevertheless it’s an achievement made all the more remarkable by the fact that 22 year old singer/songwriter Lea Emmery and guitarist Mattias Bhatt hail from the south-east coast of Sweden where sub-zero Baltic winds blow in to freeze the land for several months of the year, and that this debut was recorded in Stockport during the darker days and crepuscular nights of a dank English winter.

Kid Wave craft slacker indie rock and transcendental dream-laden pop of a distinctly early 90s bent – music to lose yourself in and give your life to. We hear shades of Lush and Dinosaur Jr. in their sonic sunshine, though other ears might recall PJ Harvey, The Lemonheads, The Breeders, Pavement, Teenage Fanclub. But these are all bands largely operational before the members of Kid Wave were even born – artists who singer Lea readily admits she doesn’t always necessarily know much about – so let’s not get too entrenched in nostalgia for days gone by. The one thing that perhaps unites this music of the past with the Kid Wave’s effervescent present is an infatuation with melody; this quartet never sacrifice the song for volume or let the feedback do the work. Because at the centre, beneath the shoe-gazing dynamics and the dark lyrical undercurrents that speak of existential quandaries and the confusions of young life in the 21st century, is a big beating gorgeous pop heart.