Hannah Lou Clark is a singer, songwriter, and guitarist known for her own introspective indie rock, as well as for alt bands Arthur and Foe. Arthur was initiated in 2005 in Fleet, England by lead singer Clark and some of her schoolmates. She soon adopted the pseudonym Hannah Shark, a name she also used for early solo material. The teens self-released three EPs before disbanding in 2009, when Clark opted for the theatrical dance rock of her project Foe. The debut Foe EP, Hot New Trash, appeared in 2011, followed a year later by the full-length Bad Dream Hotline before Clark set out to record under her own name. She released the first Hannah Lou Clark EP, the sparser but still rock-buttressed Silent Type, in late 2014 on her and her sisters’ Quatre Femme Records. She followed it with another EP, It’s Your Love, in the spring of 2016.
When Sheffield indie pop band Standard Fair disbanded in 2013, there was much consternation amongst fans: with a shambolic aesthetic that was nothing short of perfection, their melodic punk sensibility drew inspiration from the noisier aspects of C86. Singer Emma Kupa’s new venture, Mammoth Penguins, are similarly adept at combining frantic euphony with candid songwriting: rejection, hope, despair and all the usual common grievances of being in your late twenties/early thirties are a persistent theme. Kupa’s wry, literate refrains add bite to the more reflective moments on tracks like the heartfelt ‘We Won’t Go There’. Elsewhere, guitars are typically ramshackle and memorable hooks are aplenty, often sounding like a lost Weezer record with more power in the pop. Ultimately, though, it’s Emma Kupa’s pronounced, emphatic vocals that define this band.