Album Review: Love, Hugh – Hugh

Last time HUGH were featured on NEW LEASE MUSIC was last September, with their upbeat and chirpy single, ‘Look at In Laughter.’ Soon as I learnt of their debut album, ‘Love, Hugh’, I had to have a peep as the infectious melodic pop overtones in ‘Look Back In Laughter’ have been swimming in mind ever since its feature on the blog.

The four piece band from London, featuring Joshua Idehen and Izzy Brooks, have been praised by BBC Radio One, The Guardian, Stereogum, i-D and Hype Machine for their balanced blend of R&B/soul and synthpop featured in the 11 track album…and quite rightly so.

However I have to say the better part of ‘Love, Hugh’ is the second half of the album. The sweet melancholic presence of pop art takes a back seat, making way for the smooth and atmospheric R&B, enhanced by a woofing electronic bass (which reminds me of Massive Attack, for some reason).

Usually, I don’t follow hypes, but this one for real.. they’re definitely worth a trial. See the recommended tracks below.

Must Listens: I Can’t Figure You Out, Protect My Heart, I Don’t Like You, Take It Slow, In and Out of Love.

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Upcoming Release: Look Back In Laugher – Hugh

hughLondon-based quartet, HUGH continue their beguiling journey  with the release of their latest single, Look Back In Laughter. The three-minute smoothie is laced with a positive message, veiled by the contrasting melancholy production. Sewn together by slow-burning synths, crackling percussion and a glimmering, transient guitar to cut through the mix, the alluring song sits in the amorphous zone between trip-hop, R&B and synth-pop.

Consisting of Joshua Idehen (vocals), Izzy Brooks(vocals), Andy Highmore (production/keys) and Tino Kolarides(Guitars) Look Back In Laughter sees Joshua take more of a leading role with the vocals, where we see his background in spoken word come to the forefront of the track. His warm baritone vocal is full of subtle wordplay and charming London colloquialisms which, when paired with the contrasting piercing pop tone from Izzy, adds another dimension to their genre fusing sound, Look Back In Laughter is a soothing reminder to not dwell on the negatives of life as one day we’re just “gonna look back and laugh” – a positive message which has the power to resonate with us all.

Musically melding sounds from a myriad of influences and cultures, HUGH continue to transcend genre and create captivating music which has earned them praises from the likes of Huw Stephens, Stereogum, Pigeons And Planes and The Guardian.

HUGH are fast becoming one of the stand-out artists in a musical landscape where the blurred lines between genres are becoming increasingly prevalent.This is evident in the live environment as well as on record, and in order to support the latest release they will be playing a special one-off showcase at Elektrowerkz in London on 12th October.