Hookworms, “Off Screen”

Amelia Pitcherella

Photo by Steve Gullick.

Leeds-based psych group Hookworms delivered burning, dizzy, and loud tunes with their debut record Pearl Mystic, comfortably fusing psychedelia with elements of drone, prog, and space rock. Their upcoming full-length, The Hum, seems to promise plenty more of this fusion with an even more focused sound.

The second single off the new album, “Off Screen” is restrained in energy and volume compared with the rest of Hookworms’ work, but this is by no means disappointing—it compensates for that with tremendous dynamism. The seven-minute track begins softly with muted drums and cymbals, bright guitar, and a bit of buzz, lending itself to the spectrum of shoegaze. Lead vocalist MJ’s voice is smooth and entrancing, and though the lyrics aren’t totally clear through all the reverb, something about desire emerges and the feeling is one of sweetness and vulnerability. But before it has a chance to get too hypnotic, the sound builds into a high-energy clearing with a scathing fuzzy guitar part and then circles around into an array of sweeping organs and electronic vibrations.

One thing’s for sure throughout: the song is chilling in its tenderness.

The Hum is due November 11 through Weird World.

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