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‘Young Hard & Handsome’

Words: Kieran Cook
As someone who has listened to the small amount of music by Walt Disco hundreds of times during lockdown, it’s safe to say I had been looking forward to this EP to release. With the Glasgow based sextet’s queer tenacity & flowing mullets, the young Scots have been able to cut through the UK’s music scene with a unique presence that puts others to shame. However, I was nervous to see how a band who prides themselves on their theatrical & intense performances (touring the UK and Europe last year including dates with Interpol, Sports Team and HMLTD) could deal with a post Covid-19 landscape (Walt Disco would’ve played their biggest international show in the US at SXSW this Summer if it had not been cancelled).

From the first hum of an 80s synthesizer, the EP’s highly anticipated single; ‘Hey Boy (You’re One Of Us’ feels like a flamboyant march to war in fishnet tights & stiletto heels. Vocalist James Power delivers a performance of theatrical proportions, with the song’s gang vocals forming a rallying cry as we are introduced to Walt Disco’s World of glamour.

‘’You say we’re stupid, I say you’re old’’ cries vocalist James on the EP’s lead single ‘Cut Your Hair’. Described by the band as if "OK Boomer - The Musical" was a 2 and a half minute pop song. The new romantics’ tone is ecstatic & free, a refreshing outlook on the ugly issues the world harbours. It’s clear that this is a band that celebrates flamboyance & embraces queer pride, tackling issues in a way that still manages to be endearing & upbeat.

‘’I Want You Want’’ is by far my favourite song on the EP. Produced by Thomas McNeice of Gang of Four, the track cuts in with darker guitars, undercut further by a low-key synth that sparkles in the distance of the track. The dissonance between the riveting instrumentation & the passionate vocals embodies both the band’s penchant for Post-Punk sensitivity & exuberant Poppiness.

Closing out the album, Walt Disco threw out yet another curve ball, with lead singer James delivering his strongest vocal performances in a lamenting ballad. By the EP’s closing, it’s as if the curtains are closed, the exuberant energy of the EP’s previous songs are replaced by soft intimacy. With this conclusion to the band’s first EP, it’s already obvious that this is a band with inspirations across time & genre, effortlessly combining the energy of Charli XCX & David Byrne in a way that celebrates the generation of fans behind them in defiance.

Though short, this EP delivers a shot of energy in these glum times. For a band whose live performances are so notorious, it’s reassuring to see that there is more to Walt Disco than a fantastical stage show, with the band displaying a truly diverse set of sounds so early in their career. It goes without saying that this is a band to keep an eye on.

Photo: Marilena Vlachopoulou
New single “Hey Boy (You’re One Of Us)” is out now. Walt Disco’s debut EP ‘Young Hard and Handsome’ is out 30th September. The band will tour the UK in March 2021.


1 March 2021 - Aberdeen, Tunnels

2 March 2021 - Dundee, Hunter S. Thompson

3 March 2021 - Dunfermline, PJ Molloys

23 March 2021 - London, Moth Club

24 March 2021 - Manchester, Yes (Basement)

26 March 2021 - Edinburgh, Sneaky Pete’s (Sold Out)