Guitars for synths and London for Los Angeles
“It started as an experiment: I wanted to see if I could write like Robyn.”
If you heard either of Veronica Falls’ two albums you can be forgiven if that quote, from their singer and guitarist Roxanne Clifford, takes you aback. Their 2011 self-titled debut was a doomy goth-pop affair, thick with atmosphere and featuring a lead single named after a prominent suicide spot. Their second album (2013’s ‘Waiting For Something To Happen’) was a little lighter, taking its jangle-pop cues from the likes of Camera Obscura and The Shop Assistants, but remaining firmly rooted around the guitar and a traditional band setup. There were melodies for days and no shortage of earworms, but we can safely assume that Veronica Falls were a band that viewed anything electronic as anathema. Which is why Clifford’s first singles as a solo artist, under the name Patience, have disarmed the group’s fans. The vocals are unmistakably hers; honeyed without being saccharine, expressive without being forceful. It’s everything surrounding them that’s changed. ‘x’, her latest release on the Night School label, does in fact sound a bit like Robyn. A programmed beat replaces live drums, and interlocking synth lines take over from breezy guitars. In short, this is all-out electro-pop.