Liverpool based indie rock trio, Persian Hugs kick off their EP Making Conversation with ‘Turn Back Now’, a track which makes the band’s strengths evident within the first minute: creative guitar lines gliding over a rock ‘n roll beat, frontman Harry Belcher’s excellent vocals, and a strict adherence to the time honoured strategy of ‘don’t bore us, get to the chorus’. It’s a sound that you can easily imagine reverberating from the slightly damp walls of a packed intimate music venue.
Latest single ‘Just A Little’ sees the pace relent momentarily before the chorus picks up the energy where it left off, the guitar at times reminiscent of early King Krule material. Again it is the drums which drive the band, finding inventive ways to sew the verses and chorus together whilst managing not to over-elaborate or distract from the melody.
It is in the EP’s final two songs that Persian Hugs come into their own. The band’s debut single ‘Lipstick Mama’ opens with a brilliantly menacing riff that sounds a little like the theme from Jaws channelled through a Vox amp, before an ‘Arabella’ inspired chorus, arguably the strongest on the EP. The closing track ‘What I’d Do’ is the album’s high point: musicianship, songwriting and lyricism all come together to form the most balanced and coherent song of the four. The opening guitar flourish is one of the EP’s most creative moments, disappearing during the verse only to reappear towards the end of the song, as Making Conversation closes with a one minute long instrumental crescendo, a more than fitting ending to the band’s first offering.
All in all, Persian Hugs are energetic and melodic, and Making Conversation wears its influences on its sleeve whilst remaining creative enough to steer clear of generic landfill indie territory. Plus they’ve got one of the best band name puns since the Dandy Warhols. What’s not to like?