Arliston – “Thawed”


A ghostly folk sound enamors on “Thawed,” the latest track from Arliston, the South London-based duo comprising Jack Ratcliffe and George Hasbury. The entrancing sound continues their fruitful 2023 — also catching our ears in March with the single “How in Heaven.” A morning-set grandeur is established from the get-go, with “coffee and fumes,” vocal outpouring ascending into the chilling “strobe light,” escalation amidst wintry acoustics. Wordless backing vocals add to the mystique, enthralling into an rhythmic expanse amidst textured, electric guitar flourishes.

The “save me,” refrain continues the haunting immersion, driving into the momentum-rich approach into the three-minute turn. There, a barren vocal captivation rouses into a final expanse, where buzzing bass and steady rhythms culminate in an abrupt yet satiating finish. “Thawed” represents another stirring showcase in songwriting from Arliston, who cap off a stellar 2023 with this emotive single.

Ratcliffe elaborates on the track: “While it seems abstract, It’s really a simple story about a character who is trapped in a cyclical loop of behaviour. The verses give a sense of creeping claustrophobia, and outline the problem: The character becomes addicted to the negativity coming out of media (“strobe light news”) which leads to this fractious state where everything seems non-real and illusory, just ‘coffee and fumes.'”

This and other tracks featured this month can be streamed on the updating Obscure Sound’s ‘Best of December 2023’ Spotify playlist.

We discovered this release via MusoSoup, as part of the artist’s promotional campaign.

Mike Mineo

I'm the founder/editor of Obscure Sound, which was formed in 2006. Previously, I wrote for PopMatters and Stylus Magazine.

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