April 27, 2017

Stream: Little Lunch - Little Lunch

Throwing it back to the days of recess with Australia's Little Lunch.

“Little lunch” is an Australian term. It’s exactly what the name suggests – at school, before you go for lunch, you take an earlier break for little lunch. It’s what you might otherwise know as recess. It’s for stale muesli bars, bruised bananas, or if you’re lucky, some kind of fried food in a paper bag, exchanged for a couple of dollars over the counter. In this instance, little lunch isn’t being served over a counter – there’s no brown paper bag with grease seeping through; you won’t be needing teeth or tongue for what you’re getting today. Today, Little Lunch is being served up as a cassette tape drenched with dozy guitars, served with mouthfuls of apathy. This tape is your preteen memories, prepared to be heard and seen; splattered throughout the inside of your lunchbox. Little Lunch’s self-titled debut is only four songs long and across each of these tracks, the band brings memories of recess to the forefront. Listening through it is kind of like experiencing the waves of your preteen years, all lumped together into fifteen minutes of sound.

In "Dumb Mum," we hear a deep, broken in voice. Scratchy guitars match up with moaned harmonies, as the band hones in on embarrassing packed lunches and compulsory attendance: “You got my lunch box wrong / … / I’m not your favourite son / … / Mum, Mum, you’re so dumb / all the kids in school think I’m a fool.” Later, these heavier guitar lines lift, jumping into jangled riffs. Vocals move away from their original moaning and into much lighter territory. We’re losing some of that initial heaviness that Little Lunch had been pulling together in the first two tracks. They’re shifting their weight away from sounds and instead, dumping it into their words, as "Fairweather Friends" brings back dried up friendships and bored mates: “You say, let’s hang out / Find a better option on the way / Now stuck, lonely, watching shit T.V.” We’ve moved from groaning over a packed lunch to sulking over lost friends. They might seem like they’re on each end of the spectrum when it comes to recess feelings, but a shit lunch could potentially hold the same weight as a lost friend. You won’t know until it’s already hit - but Little Lunch is here to sympathize.

The tape comes to a close with "Death To Skaters," bringing back kickflips gone wrong and nasal laughter - i.e., cocky boys on skateboards. This track closes the release with thickness and resilience. We fall back into heavy bass lines and a self-assured beat. Amongst it all, the band harmonizes in mutual feelings of distaste for jerks on wheels: “Hope you smash your ugly face / don’t be coming ‘round my place / …. / death to skaters / … / death to skater boys.” This tape is about the length of a recess break – or, in other words, about the length of little lunch. I spent my little lunch breaks on the bottom steps of the basketball court, tying boys' shoelaces together and coloring in my fingernails with permanent markers. I picked at stale muesli bars; regretfully unpeeled bruised bananas. But most of all, I talked. I moaned, I sulked. I rolled my eyes. It’s what recess was all about. The words to these songs feel like they fell straight from my preteen mouth; I watched these songs happen with my eyes rolled into the back of my head. So this tape is just what it should be. It’s Little Lunch and it’s out today, via Cinnamon Records. It won’t come in a greasy paper bag, but hey – at least you won’t have to ask for your discarded recess memories on the side. They’ll be on the house.


Listen to Little Lunch on bandcamp.

Madalyn Trewin, a scrawny Australian with way too much time on her hands, endlessly staring up at the sky. She likes to pull words out of the air and put them back together as well as she can. So, most of the time, she’s pretending she’s a poet all over her blog.