New Zealand’s The Beths are your (our / everybody’s) new favourite band.
Witty and charming, their wonderfully sweet pop punk is dripping with melodies and sunshine and a sense of humour that leaves you with a beaming smile after each listen.
Think Courtney Barnett with a little more harmony, or Alvvays but a little less melancholy. Now you’re picking up what we’re putting down.
They’re dropping their debut album, Future Me Hates Me August 10, and with songs like the title track, ‘Happy Unhappy,’ and ‘Great No One’ already out there – all signs are pointing to this being a beautiful first LP.
They’ve just come off the road for a US/EU tour and so we asked frontwoman / songwriter Liz Stokes about all the pieces of pop culture she kept herself busy with for ‘Netflix and Chill’… or should that be “Nitflux and Chull”? Sorry.
Podcast – The Adventure Zone is a live play Dungeons and Dragons podcast starring the 3 McElroy Brothers and their dad. The first campaign ‘Balance’ took 3 years and 69 (nice!) episodes reach its completion late last year. I have since then listened to it from start to finish a couple of times, as it’s just so nerdy and funny and sweet. These brothers have what can only be described as an empire of very good podcasting and video content and, at times, I have found myself consuming only McElroy products. When this happens I have to force myself, bleary eyed, out into the world again and remind myself there is other media available.
TV – This most recent tour there was only one series on everybody’s lips, and that was BBC’s 1995 6 hour mini-series ‘Pride and Prejudice’ starring Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle. Obviously the source material is incredible, if you haven’t given Austen a read, you are missing out on some ruthless lols. One of my favourite memories of the tour was getting off the motorway in the UK and driving through this idyllic country-side while Katie (our drummer) did her best impressions of Mrs. Bennett. (“IT IS ALL VERY VEXING” “MY POOR NERVES”)
Music – Sidney Gish’s record I heard back in February and I feel confident that come December it will still be my favourite album of the year. There’s something about her sense of humour, and her mix of tech-y writing with lo-fi that just speaks to every part of me. The record is called No Dogs Allowed and I don’t have a favourite track ’cause every track is a banger, but I guess start with track 1, ‘Sin Triangle.’
Books – Have I read anything new lately? No. Something shameful about me that will become clear is that I like to re-read/ re-watch / re-listen to things over and over again. I think it’s a comfort thing, and I’m sure I’m not alone in it. This is true for books where, instead of engaging and expanding my mind with new material, I find myself, particularly when touring or working a lot, reading yet-again through one of my favourite fantasy or sci-fi series. I’m going to arbitrarily roll the dice and suggest one now and it’s… The Kingkiller Chronicles by Patrick Rothfuss. Try it, it’s cool, very good world building.
Movies – I am trying to pick a recent movie I enjoyed but (controversial opinion alert) I think I don’t really like movies. They kind of stress me out, which they are supposed to do right? The good ones create tension or make you feel scared, or sad, or angry. And I just can’t take the rollercoaster ride of emotions, sometimes I’ll end up kind of messed up for a week after watching a movie. I probably would have been one of those people who fainted when watching the very first film because they thought the train was coming right at them. But my favourite film is Mean Girls and I think Tina Fey is a writing genius, I have watched 30 Rock an impossible amount of times.
Comedy – My favourite comedian is Stewart Lee, he does comedy and if I try to explain what it’s like, it will ruin it. But he’s great, and one of my favourite things he’s done is release a book for each of his hour long shows that consists of the entire routine written out and heavily annotated with footnotes. Footnotes that are sometimes pages long, and explain why he chose to use certain words, or how different jokes changed over the course of performing them many times, or where certain things he says are downright lies. It’s fascinating, because he is a fascinating writer. This video is an excerpt from “If You Prefer A Milder Comedian, Please Ask For One” where the uploader has put the footnotes from the book into the closed captions, what a trooper.
The Beths’ debut album Future Me Hates Me is out August 10 via Dew Process.