Single Review: Rosalie Cunningham – Number 149

I was a big fan of (self described) ‘vaudeville carny psych’ band Purson and was naturally upset when they split. However, lead vocalist Rosalie Cunningham sugared the pill somewhat by releasing a solo album (2019’s self-titled outing) and now this latest single “Number 149”. Continuing in a similar vein it’s organic and keeps the dark edged psychedelic flag flying high.

Reassuringly retro “Number 149” opens to a sea of swirling synths and pounds out a riff that’ll immediately hang its hooks into your cranium. With a slightly off kilter beat it seems to appear as if from strange parallel netherworld, it’s the musical equivalent of a circus tent at an evil carnival that entices you in with a tantalising trail of tempting notes. A Joe Meek protégée gone awry Rosalie lays down a vocal performance that does all sorts of aerobatics, twisting and ululating over a discombobulated beat. “Number 149” is a song born from lockdown enforced nostalgic meanderings and it’s sound is rooted in 60’s psych and 70’s rock and will appeal equally to fans of both camps.

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In keeping with a traditional single feel “Number 149” has a limited release on groovy green 7” vinyl. Flip it over and you’ll find companion piece “Fossil Song”. In the true spirit of all those classic slabs of vinyl Rosalie gets a bit experimental on the ‘b’-side. It’s still unmistakably Ms Cunningham but the coins been spun to reveal another face. Exorcising demons and opening old wounds it takes a darker turn that brings to mind Siouxsie and the Banshees in their mid-career gothic period. With plenty of reverb on the guitars and harrowing keys it’s a truly haunting affair that makes the silence that follows all the more haunting.

Number 149 was released on 12th March 2021

Check out all the bands we review in 2021 on our Spotify and YouTube playlists!

Rosalie Cunningham: official | facebook | instagram | spotify | youtube

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