Sounds on the Ground #17: The Rayographs
21 Aug 2009
“the rayographs’ songs have a dark optimism about them which, as well as expressing a kind of introspectiveness, evokes a subtly sanguine energy…”
What’s the deal?
Favourites of fellow up-and-coming stars O.Children, The Rayographs could rather accurately be described as the spiritual offspring of Patti Smith and Polly Jean Harvey. Good start, right? Furthermore, the girls are fans of the great Scott Walker, Nick Cave and Shellac to name just a few. Reading the blog on their MySpace (www.myspace.com/therayographs), it becomes very clear that this bunch are not only fixated by the sound of music, but its entire philosophy.
Astrud (guitar, vocals) and Jess (bass, vocals) decided to start a “garage band” together when they were sixteen, but for some reason didn’t start rehearsing and playing together regularly until about two years ago, when along with Amy (drums), they formed The Rayographs. They have recently been recording with underground punk rock producer leg-end John Hannon and should have an album ready for us imminently.
All this leads to: what would you expect to hear on the record? Well, in the words of Astrud, if their songs were a colour they would be “Dark blue but like petrol, kaleidoscopic - with flecks of all colours throughout”. And that just about sums it up; The Rayographs’ songs have a dark optimism about them which, as well as expressing a kind of introspectiveness, evokes a subtly sanguine energy.
When can I see them live?
2/9/2009 The Queen of Hoxton, London
5/9/2009 Offset, London
7/9/2009 The Lexington w/Gemma Ray, London
25/9/2009 Cargo, London
24/10/2009 “Hello Goodbye Show” Resonance FM Session, London
What can I listen to?
We’d recommend their latest single (and Rockfeedback Mailout pick) ‘Francis’, which was released about a month ago, but all of their songs are definitely worth a listen or two… or three… - myspace.com/therayographs. Or, you could be the bigger person, and buy a wonderful 7” from everyoneweknowrecords.blogspot.com; the Rayographs’ music was totally made for vinyl.
We all know music peaked in 1994, so give me a sound-bite about how we could compare them to some kind of obscure band from the Britpop era: Pre- To Bring You My LovePJ Harvey back in the day meets Patti Smith… add a tiny pinch of Riot Grrrl and that gets you pretty close to what the ‘graphs are like.