Feature, News, Reviews

Powerplant Announce “Grass” EP out 14th July via Static Shock Records & Share New Track “Beautiful Boy”

June 26, 2023
Photo credit: Lloyd Clipson

Powerplant

Announce Grass EP
out 14th July
on Static Shock Records

After last year’s instrumental fantasy album Stump Soup, London-based quartet, Powerplant, emerge from the dungeon and back to reality with a 5 track electronic punk record. Grass will be released 14th July via London’s Static Shock Records (Uranium Club, Sheer Mag, Chubby and The Gang, Warthog). Recorded in bedrooms with the closing song vocals tracked at East London’s music community hotbed Fuzzbrain Studio. Mastered by Andrew Oswald (SMIRK, Acrylics, Marbled Eye) in Los Angeles, California.

Today Powerplant release the first single “Beautiful Boy” from their new EP – a tale of pain and loss. ‘Beautiful Boy’ opens with an alluring and comforting soft cartoonish decoy, and right when you drop your guard, it charges into a rage of wailing synthesizers and impaling guitars. With a rigid drum machine backing, the track feels similar to a locked rollercoaster ride, taking you through carefully planned and executed spins and swirls, translating the emotional torture of grief and sudden loss. Powerplant’s mastermind Theo Zhykharyev explains, “I had the melody and the lyrics more or less written for quite some time but it didn’t mean a lot to me, until so much was lost and taken by the russian invasion of Ukraine last year. The carcass of ‘Beautiful Boy’ was what I had to process the loss personally.”

The video was filmed by Hani Hooper and Vika Ordynska at one of the many rooms at Powerplant HQ, an ex community centre for pre-teens that is set for demolition. It features all of Powerplant, a massive drum kit, late Elvis and a 3D photo of happy puppies.

Powerplant are exhilarating, this outfit has this immense energy that exudes from their unity and their vision. This intense, electrifying power plummets through their latest soundscape. “Beautiful Boy” packs a punch, the attitude from the vocal notes, the angst from the ardor. This outfit rapidly captivates with this courageous and blazing power which becomes the most addictive quality they thread within their commanding foundations.

Pre-order/Streaming link: https://ffm.bio/powerplant

Grass EP serves as Powerplant’s fatalist manifesto against burning daylight spending time fruitlessly. Like an intrusive thought or a ghost, the theme of time passing, barges into every song, calling to action. 

Powerplant began in 2017 as a solitary bedroom project of Theo Zhykharyev, a few years after he came to London from Ukraine to study. Inspired by the DIY ethics of California’s garage-psych rockers Ty Segall and Thee Oh Sees, Zhykharyev started producing noisy experiments. Equipped with the bare minimum – drum machine and a synthesiser, he proceeded to finesse minimalist post-punk, generating dark energy reminiscent of Brooklyn’s, Suicide, and released Dog Sees Ghosts EP and Quiet at Night EP on cassette. 

Powerplant’s debut LP, People in the Sun (2019) took the internet by storm when Harakiri Diat’s YouTube upload of the LP rallied tens of thousands of viewers in mere weeks. Scrollers were greeted by the cute and now iconic cover art, featuring a giddy paper cut-out of a smiling sun which welcomed all into a vivid 30 minute thrill ride. It mixed catchy and ethereal Gary Numan-esque synth melodies with addictive pouncing bass and personal yet relatable lyrics. The comfort of understanding the loneliness of nostalgia beams out of “Dungen”. The track became a musical safe haven, generating over one million Spotify streams. Four years after release, not only does People in the Sun stand the test of time, but it continues to connect and conquer hearts with its sonic and visual aesthetics. In the autumn of 2022, the album’s cover design along with the layout was plagiarised on a t-shirt design by Lazy Oaf, a trendy UK streetwear brand. Followed by an immediate revolt from the punk community taking Powerplant’s side, the design was swiftly taken down from their freshly announced collection.

In 2019 Powerplant grew into a full live band. Theo Zhykharyev is now joined by Karim Newble (Island of Love), Cajm (Jeshi, John Glacier) and Lloyd Clipston (Arms Race, Permission). Last year, after a sold-out headline tour in Europe and Scandinavia, they hit the road with American hardcore-punks Show Me The Body supporting them on the continent and in London. Earlier this year they shared the stage with Poison Ruin, Prison Affair and The Serfs.

With Grass EP, Zhykharyev has set out to pick up where he left off four years ago with People in the Sun. Home production antics return, but with a much tidier sound production that allows room for new instruments. The classic sizzling synthesisers are sharing space with cartoonish MIDI pianos, string orchestras and haunting choir sample. Zhykharyev’s developed vocal pallet, which he relentlessly draws from, conjures up a dazzling variety of moods for every track.

Grass EP is the long awaited return and a glimpse into Powerplant’s new beginning. The new songs are evidence to the more mature and dialled in Powerplant, signalling that London’s weirdest internet punks are in gear to deliver their best work yet. 

Powerplant will be on tour in the UK and Europe this summer – dates below:
15th July – Cardiff  – Clwb Ifor Bach
16th July – Nottingham – Soar Space 
17th July – Brighton – Prince Albert
18th July – London – Moth Club
19th July –  Manchester – The Peer Hat
20th July –  Glasgow – Stereo
21st July –  Newcastle – Cluny
22nd July –  Leeds – Magbate
23rd July –  Portsmouth  – Pitt St Skatepark 
27th July –  PL Poznań – Pod Minogą*
28th July –  CZ Rokycany – Fluff Fest
29th July –  AT Linz – Kapu*
30th July –  DE Berlin – Urban Spree*

*w/Glaas

Grass EP Tracklisting:

Grass

Broodmother

Walk Around (Hang My Head)

3 Medallions

Beautiful Boy
 

Powerplant are:
Theo Zhykharyev – guitar, vocals
Karim Newbie – bass
Cajm – synth
Lloyd Clipston – drums

https://www.facebook.com/ppowerplant

https://ppowerplant.bandcamp.com/

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