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In celebration of the release of their long awaited debut album, Humans’ Worst Habbits (released 27th May on Fika Recordings) Crake will be performing at select dates across the UK this June, culminating in an album launch party at the Brudenell Social Club - the place where writer and lead singer Rowan Sandle, dressed as Princess Leia, first made the pact to form a band on New Years Eve 16/17, and played her first show the following year.
Crake’s distinctive combination of gentle alt-folk and folkloric lyrics have received increasing attention of late, with Big Thief’s Buck Meek declaring the unassuming Leeds 4-piece one his favourite bands and inviting them to tour the UK/Europe, leading to a 7” on Saddle Creek’s Document series. Last month James Smith of Yard Act named them “the best band in Leeds” after he played out their most recent single ‘Winter’s Song’ on Steve Lamacq’s BBC Radio 6 Music show. They’ve also been receiving plenty of acclaim from tastemaker sites like GoldFlakePaint, Dork, For The Rabbits, Beats Per Minute, Secret Meeting and more.
Sandle’s curious worldview is at the heart of much of their forthcoming record. She believes that life isn’t as black and white as we’ve been taught, and that queer nature may hold the key to revealing the true nature of human experience. That’s why things like slime mould - single-celled organisms that form a single body when in search of food - and brittle starfish - a type of starfish whose awareness isn’t concentrated in one place - emerge over and over on ‘Humans’ Worst Habits’ and furnish it with a folklore all of its own.
Speaking on their latest single ‘Rabbit’, Sandle says…
"There are some repeating themes in Rabbit such as coming to terms with cruelty and acting unkindly. But the end is an attempt to understand where this comes - the freezing with anxiety, the defense of it all. It reminds me of a story my mum told me as a child that has stuck with me. We used to go on holiday to these ready made camping sites in the north of Spain. There was a fire and a woman’s husband died. As my mum comforted her, she replied with a simple fret over losing her husband's personal tobacco allowance and how she now had too much duty free tobacco to bring back home on her own. I was really young, probably too young to be told the story, but I never felt anger or surprise over the women's displaced anxiety. I got it completely.
I guess I do have a fundamental belief that most humans are doing their best within the circumstances they find themselves in. It's not that we are not trying hard enough, but that doesn't mean we have to accept that this best couldn't be better either. Often I think it's about trying differently."
Alongside the more obscure nature references, there’s also a very human and tragic undercurrent that runs through ‘Humans’ Worst Habits’. Sandle’s friend Anna was working for a women's liberation group in Syria when she was hit by a Turkish airstrike and lost her life. The album directly explores the grief that followed and the lessons Sandle learnt in dealing with such a significant loss.
Both mythical and pragmatic, ‘Humans’ Worst Habits’ is a sumptuous introduction to a world that has plenty to offer to all who pass through.
Rowan Sandle - vocals, guitar
Russell Searle - guitar, vocals
Rob Slater - drums, vocals
Sarah Statham - bass, vocals