Time & Location
05 Mar 2024, 19:30
Newport, 14 High St, Newport NP20 1FW, UK
About the event
The Umbrellas are four renegade romantics crafting irresistible indie pop hymns. The band’s self-titled 2021 debut album became a breakout moment, winning critical praise and sparking an international tour.
Follow-up LP ‘Fairweather Friend’ goes a step further – absorbing the sonic attack of their live shows, it balances this with studio finesse, allowing the San Francisco four-piece to become the band they’ve always aspired to be.
It’s a record overflowing with highlights. The candyfloss melodies of introductory track ‘Three Cheers!’ are matched to an impactful percussive punch; ‘Say What You Mean’ finds The Umbrellas working with total confidence, letting the song ride out to its chiming conclusion, four voices working in precision.
‘When You Find Out’ offers rotating notes of guitar punctuated by a vocal that pushes past angst to accept a world full of hope. A lean 10 track affair, it grasps towards beatific pop while fuelled by a sense of risk, and the precision that comes from long months on the road.
The Umbrellas coalesced around a group of musicians who would frequent legendary San Francisco record emporium Amoeba Music. Singer and guitarist Matt Ferrera links with bassist Nick Oka, while Keith Frerichs is the powerhouse drummer.
A chance encounter with Morgan Stanley singing karaoke at a Fourth of July party cemented the line-up around an avowed thirst for melody. “All of us love really earnest pop songs,” Nick points out. “I guess we got to a point in our lives where we wanted to be genuine.” Playing shows at San Francisco’s vital DIY redoubt Hit Gallery, The Umbrellas would share line-ups with local heroes such as April Magazine and Cindy.
Recording their debut album across a two-day spell at Matt’s parents’ house, the results won a devoted cult following. Yet the experience of touring bonded them tightly and allowed the volume to tick up a little higher, and higher, and higher. “I think we got tired of people saying, oh you’re so much louder than I thought you’d be!” laughs Matt. “Our early recordings are sweet and earnest… and we wanted it to be louder.”
Kicking off sessions in November 2022, the band used an ad hoc space Matt created in his basement, working across a four-month period. Sessions were a little more relaxed in terms of timescale than their debut, but The Umbrellas were incredibly focused on the project. “We gave ourselves more space for this album,” says Keith. “We wanted time to sit on the songs, and really work on them.”
Tickets are on sale now! Grab yours. 🎟️
Tuesday the 5th of March 2024
+ Silk Cuts
& The Lovely Basement
Le Pub, Newport
£10 / 7.30 / 16+