words Alexa Wang
I’m always getting into scrapes. I once went off the beaten tourist track in Barcelona into an area described as ‘gritty and real’ by a well known tourist guidebook. This was a land inhabited by hookers watched over by their greedy eyed pimps. Some lost souls stared back like zombies, track marks on their forearms. A couple were living on a mattress on the side of the street. They all stared at me as I walked through their world. We all knew I didn’t belong. One man sniggered to himself as he watched me walk towards him. I walked slowly trying not to look scared. When I got back into the tourist trap I felt elated, like I had escaped from a dangerous world. I had.
I thought about this when I heard ‘Miss Annie’ from Manchester’s Strange Dream. There is something spontaneous and slightly wild about this song. It feels slightly snotty and snarly. It leers at me in the same way as that man back in that seedy underbelly of Barcelona.
Strange Dream are tapping into something. They don’t sound over thought-out or polished. They have a heavy dose of world weariness and knowing sarcasm about them. A dark psychedelic rawness snarls at you and then slaps you in the face. It’s a nice feeling though. Like a wake up call from the often trying too hard and often insipid music that calls itself indie nowadays. A glorious ball of psych-rock bliss from a 2 piece that are doing things their own way.
‘Miss Annie’ started as a word game for guitarist and vocalist Vincent Strange, seeing how many coded narcotics he could fit into the songs verses, “So miss Annie and her pet are fiends (amphetamines) coco & dean lost in their dreams (codeine) St.Mary’s at the harbour (marijuana) Like she does (LSD) there’s no harm in her”. This second single was also the bands first real song writing collaboration, “Virgil already had the instrumental & never really intended to make anything more of it but I thought it could be a full song so I wrote three different versions and we picked them apart used the bits we liked. The chorus was from a song I wrote years ago but it seemed to fit right. For ages we really didn’t like how it turned out but we tweaked the music and words until we cracked the code.”
Strange Dream are a newly formed Manchester duo that fuse an array influences and energies to create imaginative and exciting sound-scapes resulting in dreamy and energetic psych-rock with garage roots and an indie edge. The track was written, recorded and produced by the bands two members, Vincent Strange and Virgil Strange using anything from ash trays and shoes in the recording process to create the tracks unique sound. ‘Miss Annie’ is the just a taste of the bands dreamy yet sometimes sometimes sleazy sound.
‘Miss Annie’ is out now and is available on all major streaming platforms.