Editor and journalist Michael Hann on The Howl And The Hum's Hall Of Fame.
It’s a joy to have a young group who combine a thrilling directness with a willingness to take their songs a little off the beaten path.
The Howl And The Hum have fantastic art pop smarts, and seem to understand that the best way to make people appreciate cleverness is by wrapping it up in big, memorable tunes. The new single Hall Of Fame sits at the direct end of their songbook – an arena-ready throb of a track that calls to mind Sex by The 1975; soaring and desperate.
I saw The Howl And The Hum last year at the Camden Assembly, without any great expectations. But they were brilliant – there were definite hints of Talking Heads (especially in Don’t Shoot The Storm), and they had a full set of strong songs, rather than one standout and 40 minutes of filler. Frontman Sam Griffiths was a compelling presence: not a dramatic character, but understatedly twitchy, rather in keeping with the music, which keeps its peculiarities in the detail, in things like pairing a melancholy melody to a lyric inspired by a bridge in Cambridgeshire.
It’s early days, of course, but there’s a real momentum behind The Howl And The Hum.