Although now based out of London, it was in the Thames Estuary coastal city of Southend-on-Sea where Samuel Jones first dreamt up First Day of Spring. Now expanded to a five-piece band, First Day of Spring spent 2022 playing regularly across the capital, as well as sharing a pair of excellent singles. With a new EP, Fly Over Apple Blossom, due at the end of February, they’ve started 2023 with a bang, releasing their most intriguing track to date, “Moon Boy”, earlier this month.
Citing influences from Sparklehorse to Sonic Youth, First Day of Spring’s music dips into the things Samuel knows, autobiographical reflections of creative “trying”, of being in your twenties and searching for both a sense of meaning and a moment of escapism. Their music feels both urgent and somehow still, as if stuck in the push and pull, rushing towards nowhere or ambling towards connection. Take “Moon Boy”, a reflection on the difficulty of living in the moment when your brain is constantly rushing forward or diving into the past, it starts with a dream-like recital of Charles Baudelaire’s poem Be Drunk, before the bass drum picks up and the whole thing rushes by in a technicolour blur. With their EP set to arrive just in time for the thawing of winter, First Day of Spring sound primed and ready to bloom.
Fronted by dual-vocalists Edie Chesters and Ollie McDaid, Wonderbug are the latest product of the East London scene that has given the world the likes of Honeyglaze and Ellie Bleach. The band burst onto the scene last year with their fabulous single, “Hiding in Plain Sight”. The six-minute blast of longing and imposter syndrome was the first taste of their upcoming EP, Wait What?, which is due later this year.