Louise McVey & Cracks in the Concrete
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Louise McVey & Cracks in the Concrete

Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom | INDIE

Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom | INDIE
Band Alternative Alternative


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So, we live in a world of near instant stardom created on a whim by our King of Saturday night music with everything packaged with computer precision under the bright stage lights. Then you look into the twilight and that's where you will find Louise McVey & Cracks in the Concrete.

There are no three minute pop songs here for Ms McVey is a chanteuse of the old school. She turns words into stories for the night people and she sings of what is to be found in the shadows of your soul.

The songs here entrance you. "Maud" speaks of the forlorn beauty that accompanies longing and loss all the way from the fragmented minimalism of the intro to its surprise demise while "Night" is an impatient, nervous song punctuated by fractured guitars that brings forth dystopian visions, cracked mirrors and thoughts of a life lived permanently in the shadows. It's a song that can only be stopped by the dawn. In comparison, "Ode" is a strident guitar driven assault on your ears before Ms McVey's insanely cool siren voice points us towards the highway of the damned and "Love Lust Tales" evokes visions of movies flickering in black and white projected on an old sheet in a long abandoned house. Every nightmare needs a soundtrack, after all.

The smoke clears. Was it all a dream? An enchantment born of a night in the urban jungle? There's a voice on the wind. Men fall in love with torch singers. These four songs are the reason why. - Bluesbunny

Back in the basement of life again.

Smoke. Screeching, wailing guitars. A sonic assault on the senses. She's Hit have just walked in to the stage and let rip. No fanfare for this band. They barely pause between songs leaving no time for any applause. Hell, they barely acknowledge that there is an audience. They are the Jesus and Mary Chain reborn. Super cool in that way that only delinquents can be, She's Hit are the new bad boys in town.

Red curtains line the back of the stage. Red lights cast their shadows on the stage. The sound of an electric piano escapes the gravitational pull of some entrancingly melancholy vocals from Hillary Van Scoy, the voice of Blood of the Bull. Then she escapes from the piano and exorcises a Tom Verlaine shaped demon with her guitar while the drums beat solidly behind her. Fade to black.

Then there's a voice. The voice of a siren calling men to their doom. The songs she sings evoke elemental forces crashing around you like waves in a storm. The saddest, angriest guitar you have heard cuts those songs up with total precision - not so much a musical instrument as a weapon. How do I describe Louise McVey and Cracks in the Concrete? Dark cabaret? Art house pretention? A Devil sent temptation sent to get me to sell my soul? Run if you like but there's no escape for you have already fallen under their spell.

The Devil has all the best tunes. - Bluesbunny

The first time I heard Louise McVey's rich, gothic voice, like crushed purple velvet and poisoned honey, I was spellbound. Dressed like some kind of burlesque Victorian governess with her prim hair and wide sleeves, and with Cracks in the Concrete's spine-tingling accompaniment providing the perfect backdrop, the 13th Note's stuffy basement felt almost enchanted. Not for nothing has the act been compared more than once to the perfect soundtrack for a David Lynch movie. - The Scotsman


"Louise McVey & Cracks in the Concrete" E.P. 2009 (Digital distribution) Optimo Music & 2010 release White vinyl with Metropolicana records.

"Live in Stereo" digital distribution 2012

(Debut album expected April 2012)



Louise McVey and Cracks in the Concrete

Vocalist Louise McVey and guitarist/noisemaker Graeme Miller met in a basement in 2009. Their shared passion for dark unexplored musical territory has made for a highly fruitful period; exploring dusty pianos, scuttling guitars, sonorous vocals and selective percussion. As the sounds and ideas grew, drummer Gordon MacPherson, pianist Jimmy O'Donnell, bassist Garry Freckleton and violinist Kathy Boyd joined up to create a stark haunting backdrop for Louise's vocals.

In 2010 they performed live in amongst others Glasgow, Edinburgh, Stirling and Berlin to rave reviews and played support slots with Pete Molinari and She Keeps Bees. They played a well-received Radio 1 live session for Vic Galloway in the Summer.

The band released their self-titled debut EP digitally through the hugely auspicious Optimo Music in Autumn 2009, which later appeared on 7" white vinyl through Metropolicana. Their debut album is approaching completion and the band will continue to seek out the darker corners.


"There's a colly, cold gothic element to these four songs. Don't think freezing your butt off at a Sisters or Nephilim gig, think the soundtrack to a David Lynch film, set in Glasgow. Think Tori Amos, without the histrionics, or the kind of goddess that Florence and the Machine can only dream of being."

"Louise and her band give the label four tracks of gorgeously refined gothic pop/rock noir strongly reminding of prime PJ Harvey backed by a band of whisky-worn players with a penchant for David Lynch scores. It's their grasp of darkly-tinted experimentation, and the vintage classicism of McVey crushed velvet vocals that should make this a must check release for fans of well matured rock like Dirty Three or PJ Harvey".

"So, we live in a world of near instant stardom created on a whim by our King of Saturday night music with everything packaged with computer precision under the bright stage lights. Then you look into the twilight and that's where you will find Louise McVey & Cracks in the Concrete."

"Atop a handful of skeletal, unnerving, horror movie-soundtrack compositions.
It's frightfully good stuff at times, eerie and engaging - and a perfect foundation for a full album." read the whole review


"Time for the slow burn of the Torch Song in central Edinburgh. Ms McVey doesn't have to try too hard to weave a spell. Reverbed guitar is a trebly crutch, poking the ribs as the gentle female whisper consistently pushes towards the ominous. The occasional surge threatens in a well-drilled set of blues in the key of burlesque. This is the anti-Indie, the real pulse of what goes on."

"Imagine yourself in a small, darkened room. There are 5 tables in the place and a lonely bartender polishes glasses beside a less than varied stock of old alcohol bottles. You might be sipping a whisky in candle light, you might be smoking a cigarette. You might be nursing a broken heart, or putting off a long walk home in the rain.
Louise's voice certainly made the hair's stand up. Their experimentation with violin bow's on electric guitars, to FM radio interference came totally out of left field. Definitely try and catch these artists if you can..."