• The Record Press

Ghosts, Ghouls and “Getting a Grip”

Tommyrot. A band who titles their genre as “frunge”, a funk and grunge fusion. Tommyrot’s track “The Happy Ending Song” was released in the dramatic year that was 2020. Despite the stasis of the arts, Tommyrot. took it as an opportunity to spend a lot of time writing and producing in the studio. Originally recorded on an iPhone 5, the song immediately sparked interest in all of the band members. Inspired by Talking Heads and The Pixies, Tommyrot gives us a track layered with distortion and edgy vocals in the repeated lyrics “Happy, happy ending”. The song opens with the words, “I've been waiting for my happy ending to come, but life goes on, and I've found that any answer I'm expecting doesn't exist or appears to be gone. So, I wrote a song to explain just how I feel, like I took a high dive in a low tide just to unload my tired mind”. In an interview with their drummer Rhys Mitford-Smalley, he mentioned that the song was often misinterpreted, “people interpreted the message as “everything is going to be okay” but really it was intended to say, “stop being so miserable and pull your finger out of you’re a***, get a grip”. I think that’s our main message”. The ethos is certainly clear in the refrain, “What do you want to say? Who do you want to be? How do you want play? Ain’t nought to me”. The song, rather playfully, shrugs off the idea of a happy ending which is emulated in the mellowed syncopated rhythms.

To accompany a track that muddies the ideals of happy endings is Kitt Trigg’s illustration titled, “Don’t Deify Dickheads”. The talented guitarist and artist draws a black and white pencil illustration depicting a gruesome graveyard of earthly delights. Kitt Trigg has filled his cartoon-esque scene with various characters and symbols: ghosts, a small chapel, skeletons, constellations and a broken-down car. Despite, the catalogue of spooky images, Trigg’s style is nonetheless very charming and brings a sense of humour to the artwork. The ghosts and skeletons have curling smiles and the far distanced house reads the words “anyone wanna hurt I don’t”. The skeleton in the foreground is standing cosied up in a hoody looking up to the word “truth” written on his forehead, smiling as if content with the word’s meaning. The playfulness of both the artwork and track comes with the content knowing that “things aren’t so bad”. Clarified in Tommyrot’s disregard of waiting for happy endings and Kitt Trigg’s gleeful graveyard. Trigg’s title suggests that the dead and departed lived a lifetime of worshiping “dickheads”, leaving them happier now that they’ve escaped a life of mental turmoil, the gravestones read “mortal abuse” and “low self-esteem”. As shown in the pastel coloured stain glass phallus, much like “The Happy Ending Song” there is an underlying cynicism to the knowing that happy endings aren’t inevitable. Trigg’s art activism and Tommyrot’s track advocates an outlook that champions self-made happiness.

LOUD ART LIVE, a digital exhibition where music meets art. CLICK HERE to view Kitt Trigg’s artwork and PLUG IN to listen to The Happy Ending Song by Tommyrot.

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