‘Never Give Up‘ is the debut LP from Abjects of London, UK composed of singer/guitarist Noemi from Spain, bassist Yuki from Japan, drummer Alice from Italy, and Teo from Serbia.
Noemi comes from the north of Spain, lived in Milan for a while, moved to London to learn English, and got hooked into the city’s diverse music scene. She played bass in a few London bands until she started writing her own songs in her bedroom while recording early demos on Garageband. Computer geek by day, the idea of forming a band came after spending a year full of coding and staring at a computer screen whilst doing a M.A. in art & technology at Goldsmiths, learning 5 more experimental coding languages, and even programing a robot spider. At that point she decided to pick up music again.
Noemi met Yuki (bassist) at pub where Yuki used to work, and joined a previous project of Yuki’s. Yuki had found her way to London from Tokyo where she had been a signed J-Pop artist with a fair degree of success, but ended up staying in the city after falling in love with it during a London recording session—and After Noemi picked up music again following a year of school, she called Yuki up to ask her to play bass in her project. Yuki had never played bass before, but picked it up exceptionally fast while adding her own talents to help structure the songs and backing vocal harmonies.
The duo met their drummer, Alice, while she promoting gigs at a vintage shop called Paper Dress in Shoreditch, and played a show she booked for them in a window of the shop. Alice is from the south of Italy, lived in Holland, and drove with her boyfriend from Den Haag to London in a derelict Fiat Fiorino. When they arrived they parked somewhere in North London, didn’t come back for it for 2 months, and finally got rid of it for £200. They moved to a flat in East London and set up a drum kit in their basement living room where Alice learned to play the drums and formed the band Dead Coast with her boyfriend.
In their first year as a band in 2013, the trio meshed quickly and developed a loyal following in the local London and regional UK touring scene netting them opening spots alongside the likes of Mikal Cronin and Fat White Family. Their first national tour of the UK with PINS soon followed, as did a tour of Japan where they shared bills with the legendary Guitar Wolf. They kept the momentum going with a European tour in support of their “Gone” EP released on the Bristol label, Stolen Body Records, and soon toured the US in spring of 2016 with their Double Bind 7” put out by Greenway Records of Brooklyn, NY.
After that tour Yuki had to come back to Japan, Noemi moved to Barcelona for a few months, and Alice remained in London. Though removed from her bandmates Noemi kept at it with her songwriting—which she found to be taking a more mature and intricate nature referencing the uncertainty about the band’s future with all members living in different countries (“Never Give Up”), trying to control and hide feelings of impotence and frustration (“The Storm”), the indignation and disbelief in the fascist policies leading to Brexit (‘Fuck Brexit’), being creatively stuck, procrastinating and leaving everything for tomorrow (‘Mañana’), and the impotence of not being able to talk openly about problems with a person you love (‘The Secret’).
Said Noemi of the songs, “All these complications are seen as new challenges to overcome whilst having a lot of fun at it. Life is full of problems and obstacles, but we’re never going to give up having fun and living our lives the way we want.”
True to the ethos of these new songs, Abjects reunited for a 2nd tour of Japan to promote the special Japanese edition of “Double Bind”, returned to London in November 2017, sprinkled in shows with LA Witch, Colleen Green, and the 126.96.36.199.’s, and began to record their debut album with Jim Riley at his Rochester based Ranscombe Studios. Jim’s involvement with the Medway Scene and the ever-influential Billy Childish had caught the attention of the band, and they also loved his preference for tape and the natural sound of wave and magnet over the brittle pixels of digital recording.
The result is the “Never Give Up” LP, set for release February 15th, 2019 on Yippee Ki Yay Records and international distribution through Redeye Worldwide. The album captures the high energy of the bands explosive garage punk—particularly in the opening number, Abburido. Re-recorded and re-arranged for the album from their first demo release, the track sung in Noemi’s first language, Spanish, illustrates the beginnings of the band characterized by short and loud bursts of energy. Yet there is more at play with the ‘The Storm’s pulsating bass illustrates the contained tension expressed in the lyrics, ‘Mañana’’s hypnotic rhythms and experimental stylings inspired by The Monks, and ‘Never Give up’ featured distorted guitars and bass driven rhythm section that contrasts with airy vocal harmonies that twist and intertwine towards a final resolution.
“A Long Way to Go’ closes out the album on an introspective and melancholic note by examining how focusing on the positive and welcoming adversity can help humanity to overcome a variety of challenges on a personal and global scale that collectively test our emotional mettle. Struggle builds character, and we have our friends and family by our side to help us, drive our lives forward, and live life to the fullest.”
releases February 15, 2019
All songs written by Noemi M. Santiago
Arranged & performed by Abjects
Recorded at Ranscombe Studios, Kent– October 2017
Produced, Mixed, and Mastered By Jim Riley
Glenn Prangnell: Percussion on Nañana, Dream Song, Surf, and A Long Way To Go