Ambleside with that brand new banger.
Honestly, when it comes to Ambleside, I’ve never really gotten the whole buzz about them in the local scene. Not when there are bands doing melodic hardcore that much better here in Australia like your Stepson’s, your Vacant Home’s, your Hindsight’s and so on. Yet these five Adelaide local lads have just this week offered up the very best reason to take real notice and listen in close: ‘Blur‘, one of their most potent mixes of melody, emotion and hardcore yet.
In a recent press release, vocalist Daniel Stevens spoke of the emotional vulnerability that is always funnelled down into the band’s music, saying, “Every song we release, lyrically is about a significant moment in life that I have struggled to get through. Writing about these situations has not only helped me through genuinely processing some of these issues, but also helped me heal and therefore moulded the person that I am today.”
As for ‘Blur‘, it’s quite clear that the topic the frontman and the band are addressing here is a dire lack of motivation in one’s life; whether it’s from the over-repetitive cycle of work, various relationship stresses, dealing with your insecurities, battling anxiety or other mental health problems, or all of the above.
Musically, it’s not breaking any new ground for Ambleside’s genre but the hill that I’ll gladly die on here is that this is easily their best execution of their alternative/melodic hardcore sound yet. That chorus is just so goddamn memorable; the chord progressions are simple but strong; the production is uncluttered and well-balanced; and their mix of light and heavy sonics is just really well done here too. So when ‘Blur‘ builds up to that final outro, it carries real weight with it, both in the vocals and in the instrumentals.
Teaming up with usual suspect Kieran Ellis-Jones AKA Crystal Arrow Films for this latest track’s incredibly well-edited music video, the two groups piece together an effective audio-visual package in which the clip’s visuals feedback into the music and the song’s themes. Other than Stevens‘ moving lyrics (“This cloud ran out of rain/I want to feel something/Even if its pain“) and the song’s satisfying hooks, this internal sense of struggle manifests in a variety of ways in the film clip.
Firstly, this shows up in how the main character becomes more and more drained of their colour (i.e. life) by the end of it, becoming a mere blur and giving into their depression. It’s how the repeating backing vocal parts of “Fall asleep and Fall behind” in the bridge act as the characters inner doubt and the perceived negativity of other people. And it’s how when Ambleside’s final performance scene of them playing in a drained swimming pool (a fitting location given this song’s narrative is centred around feeling empty) shows blurry and shaded doubles of all five members edited in behind their persons; embodying the closed-off doubt and depression that either resides in the five-piece, the darkness that they’ve once dealt with, or maybe both.
Look, that’s just me – read into this however you want to, friends. Either way, it’s a great clip and an even greater song. Get around it.
Catch Ambleside playing this new ripper on their upcoming national tour with Polaris, The Plot In You & Tapestry. Dates below:
Thursday 12th April – Perth, WA – 18+ Amplifier Bar (Ambleside not appearing) – SOLD OUT
Friday 13th April – Brisbane, QLD – LIC/AA The Triffid – SOLD OUT
Saturday 14th April – Sydney, NSW – LIC/AA Factory Theatre – SOLD OUT
Sunday 15th April – Newcastle, NSW Small Ballroom – SUPPORTING THE PLOT IN YOU
Monday 16th April – Sydney, NSW Red Rattler Theatre (ALL AGES) – SUPPORTING THE PLOT IN YOU
Wednesday 18th April – Melbourne, VIC – 18+ Corner Hotel – SOLD OUT
Thursday 19th April – Adelaide, SA – LIC/AA Fowlers Live – SOLD OUT
Friday 20th April – Melbourne, VIC – AA Arrow on Swanston
Saturday 21st April – Melbourne, VIC – 18+ Corner Hotel – SOLD OUT