Lying somewhere between Radiohead and Deep Purple, UK-based trio Echo Hotel drag the classic rock sounds of yesteryear to 2021 with their obscure sound. Formed in early-2018, Ed Hambly (vocals and guitars), James Waldron (bass) and Jack Holliday (drums) began building a reputation for engaging live performances. In 2019, the UK-based trio entered the studio with producer Jonathan Segar to capture the energy and enthusiasm behind their live shows – ‘Hangers On’ is one of these singles.
Hypnotic and haunting, ‘Hangers On’ is a kaleidoscopic soundscape of flowing instrumentation and smooth melodies. Yes, the instrumentation has a mish-mash effect in its hazy ambience, but there seems to be a soothing steadiness to lull you into a false sense of security. As soon as you find yourself plunging into a swirl of guitars and drums, Echo Hotel pull you back ensuring you don’t become too lost in the entangled mess of music.
While ‘Hangers On’ retains the grunge-y sounds of the previous ‘Supervisor’, ‘Dispatches’ and ‘Nocturne (For Jack & Jill)’, it is far more eclectic in its design. Showcasing their versatility and innovativeness, the new single adopts a more languid approach with sentimental lyricism – although the introspective lyrics are a common element in Echo Hotel’s music. Touching on the issues of hedonism, isolation and escapism, ‘Hangers On’ has a melancholic nostalgia that seeps into your bones and leaves you gasping for breath.
“The idea that turned into ‘Hangers On’ came from a time I went back to my brother’s house with him after one of his club nights. We found it just full of random people engaged in an out-of-control afters. He’d not met most of the before – friends of friends… but here they all were, trampling all over his stuff. This theme of alienation and discomfort in your own home has stuck with me for years.” – Ed Hambly on ‘Hangers On’
A fan of Radiohead, it is obvious the iconic group’s sound will influence Echo Hotel. Not only is the melody reminiscent of Radiohead, but Hambly taps into Thom Yorke’s gritty vocals. The thing is, this reminiscence is not evident in ‘Hangers On’ as Hambly showcases a distinctive richness to the hushed vocals. Combine his dulcet tones with the soft guitars, drums and sensual saxophone and you have a breath-taking three minutes of music.