Seemingly everyone’s favourite Perth band, Methyl Ethel, are back with nifty little indie rock number Scream Whole. The track is a little more adventurous than the songs off An Inhumane Spectacle and Everything is Forgotten but it is still heavily stroked with the Methyl Ethel brush we have come to know and love.
On Scream Whole, Jake Webb’s indie vocals are still the nucleus of the music, but there seems to have been a mature step forward in his writing, with daring and less literal work at play. The first section of the song is a jumble of words thrown at you in Webb’s unique delivery, surrounded by howling synth and deep, rich base that swells and dissipates eerily, giving the song a feeling of complete mania. You start to feel a little lost and in need of the hooky chorus to come and save you. And whilst the billowing chorus does come, and it is fabulous, it’s not as up front and straightforward as you might have come to expect from the band.
The song is accompanied by a video which has TV screens with close ups of a an eye (Webb’s presumably) and a mouth mouthing the words to the song; the TVs multiply and change in shape and patterns constantly, like a scrambling, anxious brain trying to reorder itself. Whilst it’s a more chaotic feel to say Ubu, it still has Methyl Ethel’s signatures; minimal colour tones, strong lines and confidence in its simplicity and direction.
Whilst the songwriting is more figurative and daring, the music and visuals are definitely edgier too. Scream Whole has still got that indie pop sentiment, enigmatic melodies, lurching bass, charming chorus and classic feel we love about Methyl Ethel’s sound, but in Scream Whole, Webb might be letting us in a little bit more, as is apparent with the close up of his eyes and mouth, and whilst doing so – flexing his artistic talent.