At a time when every major album release is a fastidiously managed event designed to be as bleeding-edge as possible, we should be thankful for Let’s Eat Grandma, two multi-instrumentalist 17-year-olds from Norwich who seem to have zero interest in tailoring their outsider pop to current tastes. Their debut album is likely to be one of the few this year that features the deeply uncool sound of a recorder solo, and definitely the only one that manages to evoke the Cocteau Twins, Fiona Apple and Alisha’s Attic in one song – the bewildering Eat Shiitake Mushrooms. Let’s Eat Grandma describe their sound as “psychedelic sludge-pop”, which in practice turns out to be a peculiar mix of backwoods folk, stark electronica and slightly naff late-90s chart fare (think the garbled half-raps of Billie’s Because We Want To). By rights it should be a mess, but it turns out to be a beguiling brew. The affected childlike cutesiness of the pair’s vocals rub up against chilly trip-hop on Deep Six Textbook, and nightmarish fairytale folk on Rapunzel, creating something that is at once catchy and deeply creepy. Bon appetit!
Let’s Eat Grandma: I, Gemini review – creepily catchy outsider pop
Gwilym Mumford is Culture editor of the Guardian Saturday magazine. He also writes The Guide, a weekly pop-culture newsletter