- 13 Dec 21
Featuring previous single ‘Ladybird’, Banshee is set to be a "more fully-realised, rich record" and marks a new high for emerging Galway band NewDad.
Galway indie-rock quartet NewDad have announced their next single ‘Say It’ will be released on 11th January, with sophomore EP ‘Banshee’ arriving on 9th February via Fair Youth Records.
Julie Dawson fronts the rising band alongside Áindle O'Beirn, Sean O'Dowd, and Fiachra Parslow. NewDad formed while still at school in Galway and credit a random band name generator for their unusual moniker. Having initially felt isolated as a new Irish band, the success of friends and fellow countrymen Fontaines D.C. and The Murder Capital forged a path for the band. In early 2020, they recruited Sean O'Dowd on bass, having existed as a three piece prior to that point. Initially getting together because Julie “hates playing and singing on my own,” the band grew more serious about their sound and decided to move in together to write and record as much as possible when lockdown hit.
The first result of this was the band's debut EP Waves, released in early 2021. Dark and stormy with undeniably beautiful moments amid the mammoth guitars, the EP acted as a perfect introduction to the world NewDad have created for themselves and picked up fans across the globe. There’s a heaviness to the music, which the band pin to a love of The Cure, Pixies, and Slowdive among others, that transcends local scenes or languages. Julie’s songwriting brings a subtlety to their sound, weaving personal relationships and influences from the worlds of literature and cinema to add depth.
She explores these themes more closely on the band’s new EP, which was mixed by legendary producer John Congleton. “When I was writing Waves, I was out of school but looking back at experiences from that time,” Julie says of an EP that delves into “family, relationships, and all of the mistakes you make at that age.”
‘Say It’ is "perfect pop, a brilliantly urgent single that highlights the extra experience and time the band have had in the studio," according to a press release. "Julie’s vocals are amongst her best yet, and capture the emotion of the track, the rushing sensation you feel when in the midst of an affair."
Referring to the origins of the single, the band write:
"‘Say It’ is about unrequited love, about when someone is with you but not really, it’s supposed to capture that frustration you feel when you’re giving someone your all and they’re giving you nothing in return. The fast pace of the song makes it feel like I’m venting which works considering the feelings of irritation and bitterness I’m talking about when you don’t want to like someone but you can’t help it’. "
Banshee is the band’s second EP. Banshee was recorded and co-produced in Belfast with frequent collaborator Chris W Ryan and was mixed by John Congleton (Lana Del Rey, Phoebe Bridgers).
“This EP is definitely bigger, having more time in the studio definitely meant we got to experiment more and layer more into each track so there’s an overall bigger sound!" NewDad said of their new EP. "The main themes of this EP are restlessness and anxiety, during lockdown that’s how myself and most people were feeling so that’s what inspired a lot of the writing.”
The new music is brighter, something Julie pins on the excitement of moving in together as a band.
“There’s a lightness to the songs and we’re moving in a more pop direction, too.” Ladybird was inspired by the Greta Gerwig movie of the same name while the bittersweet jangle of 'Say It' deals with the heartache of being more interested in someone than they are in you.
Other songs, including the epic and sprawling 'Spring', are more inward looking and tackle the waves of anxiety living in the modern world can make feel inescapable. “I’ve written a lot of songs about dreams, sleep and restlessness. This past year has added a whole heap of pressure onto us so I’ve been doing a lot of talking through what’s going on in my mind.”
These songs capture a moment in time for a band with big ambitions, and a bright future they’re eager to chase down as quickly as possible. Work has already begun on a debut album.
NewDad have also confirmed more live dates for next year following the incredible success of their first UK tour. They’ll appear at SXSW and All Points East, alongside their biggest UK and Ireland tour so far. At All Points East they’ll be sharing a bill with Gorillaz, Self Esteem and Idles, no less. Around SXSW the band will also play their first solo US shows, heading to New York and LA.
Check out the full list of dates below:
Mon 14th: Zone One at Elsewhere, Brooklyn, NY
Tues 22nd: Moroccan Lounge, Los Angeles
Mon 28th: Brighton, Chalk
Tues 29th: London, Heaven
Thurs 31st: Bristol, Thekla
Fri 1st: Birmingham, O2 Academy 3
Sun 3rd: Nottingham, Rescue Rooms
Mon 4th: Manchester, Gorilla
Tues 5th: Glasgow, Oran Mor
Thurs 7th: Dublin, Whelans
Fri 19th: All Points East at Victoria Park