Drew McConnell :: Helsinki
Drew McConnell is more famously known as the bassist in Babyshambles but recently has been working on his side-project Helsinki. The most recent Helsinki album, released Spring 2015, features a number of special guests including Peter Doherty and Albert Hammond Jr.
One may also consider McConnell, ‘a musician to the stars’, judging by his vivacious CV and the roll call of ‘A-List’ musicians on ‘A Guide For The Perplexed’. In Helsinki, you hear a true musician through and through – with an ambitious sound, arresting voice and a charming invitation into his view of the world.
Helsinki is a personal project of both rock and folk, with pieces marked by skin-deep sensitivity. This ‘Supergroup’ includes the drummer Seb Roachford of Polar Bear , guitarist Matt Park of the Mystery Jets and keyboardist Stephen Large, who has for Squeeze, resorted to the keys. And let’s not forget the percussion player, Jamie Morrison from (Noisettes , Stereophonics ). A Guide For The Perplexed is surprisingly astonishing. We feel a great panel of influences, from the traditional Irish folk rock roots to BritRock; a melting pot of influences is accurately spat out in a near-perfect way.
We invite you to listen to the warm, melodic ‘Rising Heights’ below. McConnell gathered together a colourful salmagundi of musicians for the new album but his sweet-tinged vocals are right at the forefront of the single iced with a killer Radiohead-esque bridge.
With a far richer, more all-encompassing and cinematic sound and feel than any previous endeavours, ‘Rising Heights’ has marked a promising launch for McConnell’s album; the sound of an artist shining in his own right, outside of any other legacy or misconceptions.
He knows his musical onions, does Drew: as well as this here Helsinki project and the Babyshambles day job he went barking mad with Mongrel alongside various Arctic Monkeys and Reverend And The Makers, and has performed with a multitude of other characters, from The La’s to Lethal Bizzle to Africa Express with Damon Albarn, Gruff Rhys and Flea in Lagos and Paris – all this alongside his long-term involvement with the Love Music Hate Racism movement.
‘Choices’ / ‘Brideshead’ is the new single from Helsinki.. released digitally on April 15th – and to celebrate Drew played a special free intimate stripped back show – a double bass, a violin and brushed drums. His show at the Servant Jazz Quarters on April 19th, drew the curtain on the campaign for ‘A Guide For The Perplexed’, an album with its heart on its tattered sleeve and its tattered sleeve reaching for the ragged sky, as subtle melodies sink into a multi-national gumbo of organic acoustic soundscapes which are jaunty and sulky and ever-so-gently riotous, frequently all at the same time.
RIYL: Babyshambles, Beck, Elliot Smith
Plutonic Group Syncs | Representing GREAT Music WORLDWIDE
- Rising Heights
- Choices ft. Pete Doherty
- Keys (feat Emma Gillespie)
- Cologne Hotel
- Green-Eyed Twin (feat Ray Suen)
- I Can't Get You Off My Mind