Back in May, Gigwise was at FOCUS Wales keeping an ear out for emerging talent and one of the best discoveries made at the festival in Wrexham was the Boy Azooga-tipped Melin Melyn. It was just immediately apparent that lead singer and guitarist Gruff Glyn has a gifted ear for music; a way of plucking catchy melodies out of the air with effortless grace.
The London-based band, who only formed last year, have been steadily building their reputation in the months that have passed since we saw them in FOCUS Wales, garnering radio support on the BBC and playing esteemed venues such as The Lexington in London and Clwb Ifor Bach in Cardiff. The latter venue neatly define the band’s sound as evocative of a kids’ psychedelic TV show.
Their latest single ‘Mwydryn’ – which is Welsh slang for someone who chats shit, basically – only serves to extend their upwards trajectory, being the infectious Syd Barrett/Gorky's Zygotic Mynci-influenced psych-tinged pop number it is. The life-affirming lead vocal melody is a proper earworm.
The upbeat feel of the music, which is streaming on Spotify below, works well with the droll-humour in the singer’s disdainful lyrics and suggests the band are capable of taking 2020 by storm.
Translating the chorus from Welsh: “A round of applause if you please / For the web that you've weaved / A round of applause if you please / For the trap that you've made,” we see bitterness and frustration in there, which gives the song some edge – an anti-establishment bent, even, considering Brexit.
Coupled with that, in the middle eight, there’s the refrain, “Gwastraffu amser” (“Wasting time”), where the singer makes no bones about his feelings towards the news cycle. "And the song title (chatting shit) can be applied to people in positions of power," says Gruff, hesitantly, wanting to stay somewhat ambiguous.
His ambiguity is not ill-founded. The depth to the song is such that to say this is a Brexit anthem would be limitating. For instance, the protagonist in the stanza below who is persevering blindly with help to no one, not even themselves, is as easily applicable to the prime minister as it is to people from many walks of life.
"You refused to listen to the voice of your pack / Any suggestions, you exploded with rage /But in the desert, you hobble lame /No matter at all, you’ll still succeed."
The above is translated from:
"Unrhyw awgrymiadau: mi ffrwydraist yn grac / Ond yn yr anialwch, ti’n hercian yn gloff /Dim affliw o ots, mi lwyddi rywffordd /Udaist yn llon yn gyffro i gyd."
As for the music, the core band members (Will Barratt, Cai Dyfan and Garmon Rhys complete the line-up with Gruff) went through their phonebook and called in musicians from two of Wales' most esteemed new bands to join them: Dylan Morgan from Boy Azooga plays a Nord keyboard and Rees from Buzzard Buzzard Buzzard plays the cowbell on the track.
The track, which is a standalone single, was recorded in Tom Rees from Buzzard's studio in Cardiff. And we hope there's more to come from the band soon as it's great stuff.
Listen to more Melin Melyn below: