Back with new single ‘Suitcase,’ Standard Fare push their juxtaposition between sonically upbeat and lyrically dark to their furthest point yet. Recorded in just one day, ‘Suitcase’ is an initially infectious listen, the track laced with a simple but fully-felt rousing euphoria that feels brighter than anything the group have done previously. Scratch the surface though and you’ll find a blacker tone, the song thematically seeing its narrator preparing for a nuclear fallout, equipped with “a bunker in my backyard filled with tins and dried fruit,” her only fear being “how am I gonna save my family?”
It’s a startlingly solemn topic to find hidden away amongst such a sugar-coated gem, and yet female vocalist Emma puts a different spin on it; “it’s actually quite an uplifting song about being prepared for hard times. It touches upon issues of identity and diaspora, and fears of history repeating itself. I wrote it after one of my older Jewish family members passed away - she had survived the holocaust and was hugely inspirational to me.”
‘Suitcase’ comes backed with the more acoustic-leaning b-side ‘Nine Days’ a more understated, reflective sounding compliment to the a-side’s instantly memorable melodies, it’s evidence of a band making real inroads in pursuit of diversifying their sound. Guitarist Danny agrees, saying “we're definitely more confident in what we're doing and there's a good feeling that we're more creatively in tune with each other.”
Standard Fare met when Danny (from Buxton) and Emma (from York) were playing in other groups as teenagers. When those projects fell apart, the pair resolved to work together, and poached Andy from Danny’s brother’s band. Early practices were held in Andy’s loft in Buxton, “and then in his Nan's living room when they got too loud.” Music is a family business for Emma too – her mother was in ‘80s anarcho-punks Poison Girls.
With demand to see them live growing globally, it looks like Emma will be getting to use her suitcase in rather more hopeful circumstances than those she’s been preparing for.