Sorry share two new singles, “Cigarette Packet” and “Separate”
Last year, North London's Sorry — Asha Lorenz and Louis O'Bryen, in addition to drummer Lincoln Barrett, multi-instrumentality Campbell Baum, and Marco Pini on electronics — released their intricate and sonically compelling debut album, 925. In the time since then, it's been relatively quiet from the Sorry camp (though we chatted with them about writing in quarantine and more a few months back), save for an exclusive Bandcamp Friday release in February, a live LP called A Night At the Windmill. Now Sorry are back with two new songs.
Co-produced with James Dring (Gorillaz, Jamie T, Nilüfer Yanya), "Separate" and "Cigarette Packet" re-introduce the band with hazy breakdowns, synth-driven electronic influence, blips of distortion, and soft-spoken yet cutting vocality. "These songs came from ideas we worked on from home during last year," said Asha. "The sounds are quite metallic / silver / grey and the lyrical ideas are repetitive almost as if they are whispers / mantras/ worries that you’d say to yourself and keep to yourself."
Sorry have also made videos for both songs, which were created by Flasha Prod, the brainchild of Asha and the band's longtime collaborator and friend Flo Webb. "Cigarette Packet" features a montage of close-ups, zeroing in on the mouths of various individuals lip synching along to the track or partaking in a smoke sesh; "Separate" has a more handmade feel as it transitions between shots of toy cars submerged in water (perhaps in a bathtub?) to real-time scenes of real cars traveling on busy streets (shot in first-person by Asha via bicycle).
Speaking on the videos, Asha explained:
We try and make the videos in a playful way whilst also expressing lots of mood and emotion; the use of black space and never showing full faces or using objects (like the toy cars) makes it feel like they're flashes of thought or surreal memories. We loosely based 'Separate' on the J. G. Ballard novel Crash. It's as if the water is his mind and he’s relaying or planning the series of crashes with the toy cars. Most of all, the videos are used for the colour splash or the movement to give the song almost another layer of rhythm that's maybe audibly invisible but you visually can feel it within the song. With 'Cigarette Packet,' we wanted it to feel claustrophobic and for intensity to build where it felt right. The mouths all merge into one voice, by the end it's hard to tell who's saying what, as if all your friends or people you meet are just parts of you. It's weird what your mind chooses to hear or remember.
You can watch both below.
Meanwhile, Sorry will play SXSW's Online Music Festival tonight (3/16), performing from The Close Encounters Club at 10 PM EST. It's also part of the festival's virtual SXSW Online XR series. You do need a online badge watch -- more info here.