Martha, a four-piece DIY indie/punk band from County Durham, have released their second album Blisters in the Pit of my Heart.
Blisters In The Pit Of My Heart is the second album by Durham based indie band Martha, having recently been released under the independent label ‘Fortuna Pop!’ on these shores. Like their first album Courting Strong, it’s also pretty damn good, and their début is also worth checking out as well if you think you might like their sophomore effort.
Despite having won a lot of praise from critics, Martha are still a relative unknown. Their music is obviously influenced by a lot of different genres and artists, but would probably best be described as indie punk music, with an occasional folk edge and poppy hooks. That sounds like quite an amalgamation, but it’s quite hard to pin down exactly what kind of music this band play, however that is no issue, as the music here is all generally pretty good.
They also do everything in a D.I.Y. fashion which is admirable, and describe themselves as queer, vegan, anarchist and straight edge – going back to the origins of punk and what it perhaps should be about. There are political messages in the music they make, however one of the most likeable things about the band is that it doesn’t seem forced. The group manage to straddle the boundary between punk and pop almost perfectly, which is surprisingly considering that many punk purists consider the two to be absolutely incompatible. Martha on the other hand prove that old adage to be false, with Blisters In The Pit Of My Heart having just the right mix of genres and sounds to it. Chekhov’s Hangnail and Goldman’s Detective Agency are pop-punk at it’s best, with Do Whatever adding a bit more of a punk edge to proceedings. There are welcome surprises as well, with penultimate track Do Nothing being an unexpectedly slow paced indie song, somehow still managing to fit in with the faster pace of the rest of the album. Another nice nod to the punk scene is final track St Paul’s (Westerberg Comprehensive), a tribute to one of their major influences The Replacements, and frontman Paul Westerberg.
Another thing of note is that there is no clear frontman or frontwoman to Martha, as all four members of the band sing at different occasions, making for a very interesting listen. Each voice adds something different to the mix and adds a bit of vocal variety – which is essential when dealing with music related to the pop-punk genre. All in all then – a very welcome surprise and Martha are definitely recommended for punk fans wanting something a bit different.
Blisters In The Pit Of My Heart is available now.