June

About a month and a half ago I was sitting in a coffee shop planning the album. I knew I was being really ambitious with the people I wanted to work with and things I wanted to do, so I was trying to think of ways to scale it back to something a bit more affordable. 

I had been toying with the idea of running a crowdfunding campaign, but it scared the hell out of me, to be honest. Being in a band is like being in a huge popularity contest that never ends. People judge you by how many fans you have (which makes sense, I guess) and having a crowdfunding campaign puts you right in the thick of it. It shows clearly in black and white exactly how much support there is for you and your music. It's a really vulnerable position to be in, and I wasn't sure we'd reach a substantial target and I was even less sure that I'd be able to deal with the embarrassment of failing if we didn't get there. MOLLYANNA has had its fair share of setbacks, and I was scared that we'd lost some of our momentum.  

But then I wondered what it would be like to be brave instead of cautious. To go big instead of shrinking myself. To show the music I've been working on in the best possible way rather than being ok with it being ok. To really push ourselves. 

I honestly wasn't expecting to get anywhere near the amount of support that you've all given. 208% funded. I thought we'd be lucky to get to 100%. From family, friends, long-term fans, and very new fans - even people who have never seen us play because they live on the other side of the world!

In case you missed it, we made some tiny documentaries about the recording process, and you can watch all four of them here:


Most of these photos were taken by T Music Hut Media.

This month we went to Wentworth Music Festival to play some tunes in a field while it pissed it down. We fucking loved it. We got to play music, then eat burritos in the rain watching S Club. Ironically, obvs.

If you missed us, you can watch us next month:

July 19 - The Cremorne, Sheffield
July 21 - The Trades, Rotherham


The Kickstarter is over, but the work for us is just beginning. Over the next month we’re filming two music videos and the live tracks for the record, so I’ll have plenty to share with you soon! Donations of coffee and redbull would be welcome.

Peace x

May

Sup! I missed out April (sorry), but it’s only because there’s been so much going on. We managed to make time for a little trip to the Botanical Gardens to look moody though:

Photo by Mal Whichelow

Photo by Mal Whichelow

Our album is now fully underway - drums are done, the guitars/bass are almost finished, and main vocals are done too. It’s sounding so so good and we can’t wait to show you it. We also worked on some extra string parts and percussion this month. It’s our most ambitious project yet and I’m so excited about it.

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For those of you who don’t know (and honestly I have no idea how you couldn’t, it’s literally the only thing I’ve spoken about in weeks) we’re taking pre-orders for the new record until June 4th.

There’s a tonne of cool stuff to order as well as the new record, including:

  • Signed CDs

  • The opportunity to watch us record two tracks

  • T-shirts with brand new designs

  • A gig in your house

  • Exclusive photos from our disposable cameras

These badge packs come with most orders - I drew the designs!

These badge packs come with most orders - I drew the designs!

If you haven’t ordered yet, don’t worry there’s still a week to go. Click the button below to pre-order before Tuesday June 4


GIGS

Summer is approaching fast and we have some dates for your diaries. Head to our gigs page or our Facebook for ticket links xx

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February //

It’s pretty weird to be reflecting on February with the sun shining through the window and the temperature outside being 14 degrees… It feels like so much later in the year. I’m sure it’s down to global warming, which makes me sad, but at the same time I’m finding myself looking forward to summer. So much has to happen before then, though!

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New EP is finally on its way!

Much joy.

This month we’ve started the pre-production for our brand new EP, so that means we’ve been finalising the arrangements of songs so when we get in the studio we can Smash It. We’ve also been having fun with art work and stuff which we’ll be able to share with you very soon!

This month’s gigs have been some of my favourites yet. We put on a hometown gig with Waster Records on February 1st and you guys didn’t disappoint - the gig sold out way in advance and by buying tickets you helped us raise enough money to book a studio to record drums. I can’t express how grateful we are to have such a supportive group of fans!

On February 8th we went back to our spiritual home in Chesterfield to help raise money for the Shaw Mind Foundation. We got to play with loads of our mates, including Steal The City and Air Drawn Dagger, which is what it’s all about really, isn’t it.

If you missed us (or just want to watch us play again) go have a look at our upcoming dates:

I’ll leave you with a particularly lovely quote from Mat of Waster Records about our gig on February 1st.

MOLLYANNA I have seen many times but last night was a step forward. They played to peak crowd, people simply couldn’t get in. Insane musicianship and mature songs played with intensity. You could see people falling in love with them before your eyes. They’re a band who quietly get on with what they do but it’s undeniable that they could easily play rooms a hundred times bigger than this. A band out in the wrong time maybe? As they’re far better than the platinum selling bands of the noughties they could possibly be most closely compared to
— Mat, Waster Records

Fragments

My writing always comes together from tiny fragments - I wish I could write a whole song in one sitting but I can’t. It might be because I have a short attention span. Or it could be because if I stay writing one thing for hours the self doubt creeps in and I convince myself it’s all crap. Maybe both? Either way, for me, putting together a song/EP is a lot like piecing together a jigsaw without the box.

Notebook #7 out of about 5000

Notebook #7 out of about 5000

I usually start by working out the bigger picture. I plan an EP by deciding how many songs I want to write and what each one should be about. Last time we released an EP it formed a narrative about MOLLYANNA burning her house to the ground and escaping. This time it’s not so much a narrative, but more of a Pandora’s box of shit from the past you’re trying to deal with and move on from. The first track we wrote is called Archaeology and it’s about therapy. I’ll write another post about this track in particular later, but for now I’ll just say that it’ll act as an intro to the other songs in the collection. It’s the reason the other songs are there.

Once I’ve decided what I want to write about, I have a couple of techniques for getting ideas down:

  1. Spider diagrams of key words around the theme

  2. Putting a timer on for 15 minutes and writing whatever comes to mind about the topic until it beeps.

After that, I start thinking about melodies. Again, these come in bits and pieces (I have a lot of recordings titled ‘Verse idea XXX’) and not all of them are winners. If I come up with something I like, then I start making the content ideas into actual lyrics that fit to it. This takes a lot of time, because I spend ages worrying that it sounds wank.

This is usually the point I send it to Mike and he makes it sound nice. Or he says ‘Sorry, I can’t make that sound nice, it’s too wank.’ Which has never actually happened but I always worry about it.

The part where Mike and I work collaboratively is a lot like that drawing game kids play, where one person starts by drawing something (like an alien’s head) and then folds the piece of paper so it can’t be seen and then passes it to the next person who draws the alien’s torso, etc. At the end, the whole creation is revealed. The tracks get passed between us and each time we add something new, but we never really know what it’s going to be like until it’s finished and we’re arranging it in the studio. Our music is a Frankenstein’s monster, basically.

So that’s my process. I’ll probably get Mike to write about his at some point, so you can see the other side of the coin… but next week I’ll talk about one of our tracks a bit more in-depth and show you what I’ve been working on.