Music: National Service ‘Meltwater’ EP Preview and Review

Continuing our ongoing series of hugely promising bands we trust in, and believe you should absolutely make time for, we’ve reached the profound, expressive sounds of the exceedingly stirring National Service.

The four-member group, hailing from North London, consist of Fintan Campbell (vocals/guitar), Daniel Hipkin (bass/vocals), Iain Kelly (guitar/vocals) and Matthew Alston (drums). They’re offering up pure atmospheric soundscapes and recent singles Concrete and Witch Trial, the latter came out this week, both mould a world that’s intensely immersive but are also interlaced with impressive, subtle melody among the depth.

These two tracks precede their upcoming second EP called ‘Meltwater’, due 4th October, and even delving into the back catalogue of songs such as Foreign Love (a powerhouse of a track), from the EP of the same name, plus Looking for Your Lover and Timid Kisses give you a real sense of who the band already want to be, which is vital for an early identity.

Concentrating today on the early echelons of the new Meltwater EP, Concrete is a rousing place to begin. With interweaving melodies, and a stellar guitar motif throughout, this holds the sensibilities of the likes of Interpol or Editors but it’s the vocals that help break it apart, in a positive way, with lead singer Fintan bringing forth a tangled web of vocal and sound, effortlessly combining and feeling its way into your grey matter.

If you’ve heard the likes of The Frames, I’d recommend live album Set List to anyone, there are the tentacles of their powerful, intoxicating performances right here with National Service. It’d be hard not to also mention The National but National Service are a different part of that alt-indie/rock world, the haunting sounds, progression and depth of the songs, which is further highlighted in Witch Trial, make this band not only want to watch out for, but with unusually captivating claws digging in, you can easily lose yourself in the music and you’d be grateful.

Recorded at Saccharine Studios in Woolwich, a building which simply adds to the atmosphere, over five days in March 2019. These sessions proceeded under the watchful ears of John Bisset, keyboardist/producer of Calluna fame, to say Meltwater is ambitious would be selling it lightly, this is a band honing their craft already but also, and most importantly, learning, expanding and inventing from the beginning. I can’t wait to hear them live, and definitely recommend listening and finding out more right here, right now:

Pre-order/save or listen to the single, Concrete, here:

Pre-ordering/save the full Meltwater EP, fully released on 4th October – and also gets you Concrete and Witch Trial, from Fierce Panda – right here:

Facebook: nationalservicemusic

Twitter: @serveyournation


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