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(Credit: Anna Lowry)


New Noise: Why you need to start listening to Malady

New Noise, a brand new featured section on Far Out, will see a renewed focus on the realm of new music as we look at some of the emerging artists you need to start adding to your playlist. These are the artists looking to make 2021 the year in which they step out of their shadows, armed with an arsenal of material ready to get the recognition that they duly deserve.

London four-piece Malady may only have one track released so far, but that hasn’t stopped the group from creating such tangible excitement around their outfit despite still being so early in their journey. While releasing your debut album as a band amid a global pandemic is far from ideal, Malady, like so many out there, have had no choice but to unconventionally tell the world about who they are.

Their debut official single, ‘London, I Love You But You’re Bringing Me Down’, was released back in November and has already racked up over 125,000 streams on Spotify alone. The track is a perfect invitation into the world of Malady and the debut single sounds fiercely fresh. They fuse an array of different styles from post-rave culture, to ambient dance and sprawling indie guitar-based music which immediately pricks the ear.

Frontman Percy Junior Cobbinah tells Far Out: “The band was birthed through a combination of Charlie (Clark) and I knowing each other from going to the same gigs back in the day, Ertan (Cimen) and I going to the same house parties at uni and Charlie knowing Khaleem from college. After I sent a few emails with half-finished demos to Charlie and Ertan, we found a space to rehearse and started Malady.”

‘London, I Love You But You’re Bringing Me Down’ was produced by Eduardo De La Paz and the band’s own Charlie Clark. While musically the track brings together different sounds synonymous with the capital, lyrically it examines their Jekyll and Hyde relationship with their hometown.

Cobbinah previously said in a statement: “I must’ve heard LCD Soundsystem’s ‘New York, I Love You But You’re Bringing Me Down’ and thought the love-hate sentiment behind the tune mirrored the feelings I had, and still have, with London. The topic of the tune isn’t news to anyone but it felt necessary to document the confusion and sadness felt by how inaccessible and hostile the city is becoming to live in for most ordinary people who have most, if not all, of their lives here.”

Malady would have liked their first single to have arrived earlier, as Cobbinah explains: “Covid definitely played its part in reducing the ability for us to be in the same room to work on the song. Once we could get in the same room again, we also had to spend a long time refining the song until it felt like something that represented us in the best possible way.”

The song is one hell of an introduction to their sound and, as debut singles go, it’s one of the freshest sounding efforts I’ve heard in a long while. It’s not a re-hash of something that we’ve all heard a million times before, it is innovation that has paid off with the unequivocal praise that the single has received.

“I’m really appreciative that people have been willing to lend an ear to us,” Cobbinah said in response to the reaction to the track. “I wasn’t expecting as much positivity, at this stage of our life, as there has been. So, it’s been a very pleasant surprise.

“As a band, we’re ideally trying to create something that sounds fresh, interesting and purposeful,” Cobbinah continued. “We would find it quite hard to describe or pin down ourselves and don’t particularly even think it’s necessary, we’re still developing and trying to improve the way we articulate our ideas – naturally, the sound will develop and evolve as we move forward.”

The future for Malady is exciting and unpredictable due to their sound, which cultivates the myriad of different cultures and sounds together, a factor which takes away any glass-ceiling and means that potentially anything is possible for these Londoners. With a debut single that hits as hard as ‘London, I Love You But You’re Bringing Me Down’, all eyes remain firmly on Malady to see how they follow up the anthem in the coming months.