The lineup: Iain Cook, Martin Doherty and Lauren Mayberry.
The background: Churches are quintessential examples of that recent paradigm, mysterious-new-sensation-make-giant-splash-with-debut-track. They were just featured on label/blog Neon Gold, bearing instead of a photo of the band an image of some nuns in masks in keeping with the enigmatic religiosity of their name. This is presumably ahead of a deal to release Lies, the song in question, and join the list of luminaries who have passed through NG's ranks, such as Passion Pit, Ellie Goulding, Marina and the Diamonds, Gotye and Icona Pop. And if perusing that lineup you're wondering whether Churches adhere in any way to the label's "sound" and their seeming penchant for high female vocals, shrill synths and hooky melodies, wonder no more. In fact, Brighton's new music site the Recommender has even coined the phrase "Neon Gold pop" in its honour.
Lies couldn't be more Neon Gold-ish if they got Marina and Ellie to record a cover version of Icona Pop's Sun Goes Down produced by Starsmith. But we can hear other influences in it. The super-heavy banging, crashing beat that has the same effect as a slap across the cheeks (and we'd know) reminds us of Dizzee Rascal's Fix Up, Look Sharp, the synths have the menacing buzz of Gary Numan's Cars, and the staccato melody weirdly reminds us of Big in Japan, a No 8 hit in 1984 for German synth-pop outfit Alphaville, who are not to be confused with the similarly titled Swedish pop group, although Neon Gold did indeed invoke them when they described Churches as "a post-apocalyptic Alphabeat".
So much for the music. The lyrics make some play of their name – with references to cemeteries and calls to "make a true believer" – while also having a dark, sleazily sexual undertow: "I can feel your dirty knife/ Like I know what you want." Turns out Churches are something of a Scottish indie supergroup with members having been in, variously, Aereogramme, Blue Sky Archives and the Twilight Sad. Churches are said to be a total departure for all concerned, a fact we can vouch for if the latter are any measure. They're apparently influenced by Lil Wayne and Laurie Anderson, and if their next single sounds like O Superman meets 6 Foot 7 Foot we will be delighted. They want to "make music that people can dance to", like Franz Ferdinand before them, and they're working on songs for a 2013 debut album. And if they can overcome the early avalanche of praise, choose a good producer and pursue the right direction – whether to go for goth-pop or something more R&B-tinged? – it should be pretty special.
The buzz: "Like all great pop it has an instant appeal and the ability to wake you up" – therecommender.net.
The truth: Prepare to worship, and other church-related puns.
Most likely to: Inspire dogma.
Least likely to: Be catty.
What to buy: Lies is on Churches' SoundCloud.
File next to: Ms Mr, Alphabeat, Zola Jesus, Marina.
Wednesday's new band: Boy Kid Cloud.
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