LUMP – the product of London singer-songwriter Laura Marling and Mike Lindsay of the band Tunng – have shared prog-indebted highlight from their upcoming second album Animal (out this Friday 30th July). “Gamma Ray” is available now, including via an arrestingly strange visual animated and directed by the project’s own Laura Marling.
Lindsay says of the track, “There’s this part from the second half where you hear a voice, and in my mind that was the LUMP creature speaking to us saying ‘Excuse me, I don’t think we’ve been introduced’, and then it does this kind of ‘Ahhh!’ sound, that’s LUMP going through my Eventide H949 Harmonizer. I think that’s how you say ‘LUMP’ in LUMP language. Laura also uses the word ‘gawped,’ which is brilliant.”
Marling adds, “The lyrics are all just nonsense writing, but I always had in my mind a story I’d heard about my Dad’s cousin dying. He died very young, he committed suicide sadly, obviously long before I was born. He was incredibly good looking and everyone loved him, and when they tolled the bell at his funeral two of my Dad’s sisters fainted. They were so overcome. ‘Gawping’ comes from French singer Georges Brassens, who did a really weird song called ‘Brave Margot,’ and in the translation there is something about the men ‘gawping’.
Half cute, half dark and creepy, the songs Marling and Lindsay create as LUMP are unlike anything from either of their respective other projects. Marling’s lyrics are spontaneous, immediate, and playful (she drew heavily on her interest in psychoanalysis). Meanwhile Lindsay creates an accessible electronic palette that borders on psychedelic. Animal was recorded at Lindsay’s home studio in Margate, Kent and primarily constructed around his Eventide H949 Harmonizer, the same pitch-shifter David Bowie used on Low.
“LUMP is so the repository for so many things that I’ve had in my mind and just don’t fit anywhere in that way,” Marling explains. “They don’t have to totally make narrative sense, but weirdly they end up making narrative sense in some way.” The project became something liberating and distinct; she adds: “it became a very different thing about escaping a persona that has become a burden to me in some way. It was like putting on a superhero costume.” Lindsay says, “There’s a little bit of a theme of hedonism on the album, of desires running wild. We created LUMP as a sort of persona and an idea and a creature. Through LUMP we find our inner animal, and through that animal we travel into a parallel universe.”