Chicago-based band The Orwells have changed. They’ve grown up. They’ve found themselves in their sound. But they’re still the same angsty dudes as they’ve always been. Listen to their debut album called Remember When that was released in 2012–songs that are grungy and feel like the soundtrack to a dark party with a lot of artists who don’t care about shit. But at the same time there’s something catchy about their scratched record sound that feels soaked with a 70’s Brit rock vibe in some places, as you can hear on tracks like “Lays at Rest” and “In My Bed.”
Their follow up album Disgraceland was released in 2014–the same year that the band played their interestingly disgruntled performance on David Letterman. (Watch that video on You Tube here.) It proved the marker of where the young band was in their lives, in their music. They’re young, but their music is fearless. It embraces youth. It’s full of attitude. On the song “Dirty Sheets” they sing, “From the East coast to the West, we ain’t the worst, we ain’t the best. Drink all night, I’m such a mess.” And that was their vibe that carried them until their latest release this year–an album called Terrible Human Beings from Canvasback Music.
It’s on this third full-length that The Orwells have found a new confidence (especially coming from a tour with Arctic Monkeys). It’s a realized sound–“polished.” And perhaps they haven’t totally kicked aside their bratty vibes, but they’ve definitely learned to embrace it. They are who they are. And they know where they’ve been. And when you listen to “They Put a Body in the Bayou” which is the first song off the album, you’ll totally understand.