Oh, The Guilt are a three piece post punk / dream pop band from Bristol. They got in touch with us a few weeks back with their new single, ‘Darkest Days’, and frankly it totally blew us away. It is an epic slice of emotive post rock drenched beauty. And the video is absolutely stunning too.

To mark it’s release tomorrow (2nd Nov) we wanted to know more about what made the band tick so we asked them to pick the three records that have influenced their wonderful sound. Have a listen and have a read.

Elijah: Pixies – Surfer Rosa

My influences are endless when it comes to creating music. So many amazing artists/bands inspire me. I suppose creating in Oh, The Guilt is all quite natural and instinctive. My favourite album to remind myself of what can be created between incredible people is Surfer Rosa by the Pixies The fact it was actually made before I was born (most great music was…) blows my mind every time. I didn’t know this the first time I heard ‘Where Is My Mind’. I thought it was a new band. This, then, was a great eye opener for me at the age of 11. I started searching for other bands that I could play drums/guitar along to. Strangely enough, Nirvana’s In Utero was was another influencer, which was in turn influenced by the Pixies and also recorded by Steve Albini. Surfer Rosa is my go-to album on vinyl and I play it at least once a week with a glass of red wine. It makes me smile every time. Watching Kim Deal do her thing has inspired me too. I love her vocals and the effects she uses on them on the album and helps me think of different ways to put across my own voice. I use vocal effects a lot; they’re something I can get behind and use to tell my story. I’m also a fan of The Breeders, of course. I really could go on and on. I’m forever learning from new and old music and for me, Oh, The Guilt is my outlet for truly expressing myself. Taking on new inspirations and influences constantly means nothing has to stay the same and I think that’s my favourite part of making music. Surfer Rosa definitely helped me realise that.

Chris: Max Richter – Sleep

There are so many albums I could choose from that have influenced what I try to do in Oh, The Guilt. It’s probably quite easy to pick them out of our songs. Most of them are probably from the 90’s, when I started to develop my own tastes and obsessively search for new music. Saving any copies of Melody Maker, Kerrang and NME that had even the slightest mentions of Nirvana, Smashing Pumpkins, Pearl Jam and Nine Inch Nails.

I’ve chosen a more recent discovery (although it was released a few years back) however. One that’s colouring what I’m doing in the new material we’re writing.

‘Sleep’ is an 8 hour set of variations designed to be listened to at night, that was composed around the neuroscience of sleep.
I think the description of the concept doesn’t do the album justice though.

Although I discovered it while looking for the perfect night time soundtrack, I’ve found myself listening to it at all hours of the day and taking massive inspiration from its intertwining melodies and recurring motifs.

It’s so immersive and is creeping into the music I’m writing now for Oh, The Guilt.

The movements are so haunting that, depending on what mood I’m in, they can either put me in a dream-like state, or keep me extremely focussed on them – following the cyclical pianos and vocal refrains.

It’s so rare for me to be influenced by non-guitar music for OTG and thinking of ways to work the ideas I’m getting from Sleep into a ‘rock’ format is really stretching me. Working more in terms of atmospherics than riffs.

This way of thinking definitely started for me with ‘Darkest Days’, which reaches a climax by building layers, rather than following a verse/chorus/verse pattern. I’ve never been great at writing choruses and now I’m starting to think… maybe that’s ok?
I also never think of vocal melodies first, my lyrics and vocals are always second to guitar parts, but the spectral melodies Max Richter has woven into this piece are making me want to try.

His soundtrack for ‘Taboo’ is also extremely beautiful. But ‘Sleep’ is the one that’s keeping me up at night, ironically.

Hannah: Emma Ruth Rundle – Marked For Death

There has always been a wonderful acceptance of each other’s influences in Oh, the guilt, which I think has helped shape and expand our writing.

I’d say at the time the band started my influences were very much that of my younger years; Joy Division, Nine Inch Nails, Sigur Ros, The National..bands that I still love and have brought our previous songs that raw, spacious, powerful and restless drive.

I love honing in to the background of songs and what dynamics and textures the musicians bring, which is why I have chosen Emma Ruth Rundle- Marked for Death.

I adore the attention that is paid to the dynamics all through the album, whether that be the ambient guitars or toms played with beaters then switched to sticks.

The highs are vast and powerful and the lows soft and beautiful.

We went as a band to her show last year in Bristol at the Louisiana and were totally blown away by their sound; like a fist but with such clarity.

The highlight of the live show and the album for me is ‘Heaven’. The guitars float and dance with the vocal, and the drums slowly fade in and out, building until they crash into the final climax. The ability to allow a song space and hold back in this way shows such musicality of their drummer and is so effective to the emotional build and final impact of the song.

I think these dynamic influences can be heard in our most recent writing, particularly Darkest Days, and I hope our audiences feel the same goosebumps I do each time they listen.

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