Saltwater Sun – Hot Mess

A start of summer wonky guitar anthem, Hot Mess takes a step towards low impact punk for Saltwater Sun.

The latest output from Reading based five piece Saltwater Sun, Hot Mess does away with some of the melodic depth of previous tracks, opting instead for playful lyrics and a darkly soulful demeanour. It’s lo-fi guitar rock with a chorus so obviously pointed, yet placed under a guise of summer sunhats and paddling pools in the garden.

Jen’s vocals are as present as ever, neatly layered and shimmering with harmony. Hot Mess takes their previous grunge influences and adds a little riot grrrl. Saltwater Sun are part of a rising tide of female fronted DIY rock bands in the UK and whilst the instrumentalists possess bucket loads of musicality, it’s the band’s front woman who gives them their soul and sound.

This track has been on repeat for me along with their 2016 releases Love Defeating and Urwur during a week that has once again proven that the band are a favourite of music bloggers as they top Hype Machine’s most-posted artists, and whilst nothing disinterests me more than jumping on a bandwagon, in this case I can see why. 

I’ve heard that their live shows are packed with energy, however as a band they seem less concerned about relentless gigging, choosing instead to release a steady stream of well thought out tracks and EPs over the last few years. This has been helped by London indie record label Hand in Hive. That said, their recent appearance at Brighton’s Great Escape Festival resulted in queues out of the venue door with some people even missing the set. They don’t have to worry though, Saltwater Sun return later in the summer at a few select dates and are likely to show up at a UK festival or two in the mean time.