Indie-pop duo Dust In The Sunlight release their self-titled EP, telling the story of their journey so far.
Billy Wright and Annie Rew Shaw’s serendipitous meeting (whilst singing backing vocals for Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly’s album) has seen their partnership travel from Southend to London to write and record music that would pique the interest of record label Project Melody – all in the space of a year. It’s no wonder they wanted to record this journey in the form of their self-titled EP Dust In The Sunlight, comprised of four contemplative tracks that embody the influence of Elliot Smith, Sufjan Stevens and Joni Mitchell.
The fifteen-minute EP sets sail with the eponymous single “Dust In The Sunlight”, which upon its release, was met with acclaim from BBC Introducing and Radio X. An e-piano chimes along behind Billy’s verse vocal, passing the baton to Annie for an introduction to the chorus, which opens up to feature an expansive London Grammar-like soundscape and a lyric hook laced with exasperation: “behave in any way you want, just let me know”. The creaking and groaning of reverbed guitars throughout give rise to an image of sinking ships or abandoned mansions, whilst a tom-heavy drumbeat secures the duo’s folky influences within what is otherwise a modern song.
“Strangest Places”, the second track, is brighter in sound and sentiment. Out with the brooding ruminations and in with ethereal, dream-like imagery! This is the ‘Alice In Wonderland’ of the EP. Dust In The Sunlight get lost within their own world where stars are streetlights, and the duo’s optimistic outlook on life is palpable in uplifting choruses and wistful vocal delivery. “I told you I was lost / you said “you’re your own home”‘ is a lyric you might assume was taken from a Disney movie in all its feel-good splendour, but Dust In The Sunlight are anything but cheesy. Their dairy-free coolness comes from a certain ‘je ne sais quoi’, perhaps earned from their projects previous to this. Check out the music video:
Track three: “Winter Monday”. A bird-song intro? Can’t beat it – combined with acoustic guitar and Billy’s signature husky vocal and silky-smooth harmonies from Annie. “Break me open and pour yourself in / when the leaves start falling, will you be home again” is exactly the comforting, hot-chocolate-and-knitted-socks type of lyric we want to hear in a song of this title, and as I write this on a thunderstorming Summer’s day, Dust In The Sunlight have eschewed humidity with a firm hand. I will now light my fireplace in celebration of this song. Synthesized sounds simmer away in the background, accompanied by tinkling pianos into a gentle instrumental outro.
The plaintive final track, “Old Dream”, is a mystery for all its climbing melodies like pretty green vines, contrasted with the unusual harmonisation of the verses. This song, I think, is about wondering “what if?”. A string quartet accompanies the duo’s chosen instrumentation of guitar and piano, wrapping up the composition in a mist of cinematic warmth, and a chorus of Annie-shaped angels swirl around the final chorus, as if to provide a “that’s all, folks!” vignette for the conclusion of this delight of an EP.
Dust In The Sunlight have shed light on their journey to the present, with beautifully elegant and detailed production underpinning their catchy and clever songwriting. It’s no wonder that national radio has jumped on the bandwagon already, and we follow close behind. Keep up with the duo’s updates and future news on social media below.