Bath quartet Medway have honed a powerful, emotional and engaging sound that floats between pop-punk, rock and emo. The band offers authentic messages and emotional honesty that focus on personal events and mental health issues in an effort to help people overcome similar problems.
The quartet of Lauren, Tom, Rowan and Jack met at college and first started when their headteacher put Lauren in Tom’s band. Not a bad choice, sir. Several lineup and band name changes later, they settled on the Medway they are today in 2018. As Lauren tells us: “I find it kinda wholesome we managed to leave college and continue writing music together, considering most of the bands broke up not long after we all finished the course.”
The band released their moving, emotionally charged second single Remember August last Friday. It opens up with light guitars, which continue under Lauren’s delicious vocals. The vocals intensify over acoustic guitars then crescendo into a huge cry of “It’s all I know” as heavier guitars kick in and feed into a powerful chorus led by Lauren’s impressive vocals.
That drops into another lighter verse, which gradually builds with the lines “You said you needed more time to think, Your silence spoke volumes, You let our love sink, So I severed our ties, tried to start brand new, But I knew if I turned to see you,” which feed into a big cry of “I would just fall” over heavier guitars. That develops into a final smash of powerful vocals that bring it to a close.
On the track, Lauren told us: “The base was written years ago. I distinctly remember trying to write to it while we were still in college. I finally started writing lyrics for Remember August in 2017 after a somewhat sore breakup with one of my friends. However, later that year, I went through a short-lived turbulent relationship and breakup that has since rocked me to my core. I think that’s when the song’s meaning changed for the first time. Over the next few years I learned more about my own mental health and aspects of the previous relationship I didn’t see before and from there the song’s meaning
continued to change and grow as I did.
“Now, the song is about going through the healing process of trauma and coming out the other end and embracing the past but acknowledging how far ‘you’ve’ come in the years that followed. In the years since writing August, the middle bridge lyrics were never finished and kept changing up until recording in 2020. During the session, Jack and I had a very long talk about what went on back in 2017 and how things have panned out since and from that we were able to bring the song to its final conclusion. 2020 was a year that taught me a lot and helped bring closure to a lot of issues. It seems to me only fitting that this was also the year I accepted the past for what it was and chose to move forward and embrace things as they come.
“Expect to feel sad, Expect to feel anger. This song to me goes through several different emotional states that lead it to its final conclusion. Be prepared I guess?”
To which Tom adds: “I wrote the music for Remember August in 2015 at 3am while in uni. I don’t really remember writing any individual parts but I do remember finishing it super late one night. The lyrics and theme of the song has changed a few times over the years as Lauren never really finished writing it right up into recording vocals. I think the song came out much better for it. There was a time where the lyrics would change per gig. Expect the catchiest outro you’ve ever heard; it also features some of Laurens most powerful and dynamic vocal work to date.” Give it a listen here:
That followed the much livelier, more pop-punk feeling, and ridiculously catchy debut single Disconnect, which opens up with a bouncy opening riff and driving drums. A funky stabbing riff kicks in under engaging vocals, which feed into a big catchy singalong chorus “I’ll walk this line for this peace, I will find a better way, No, I won’t break down again, I’ll stop these tears from falling down, I’ll find a way to disconnect.”
A slightly more upbeat second verse flows into another chorus, which ends with big driving drums and guitars. That drops into a more mellow section then cool building vocals “I know I’ll get better, I’ll push for better weather, Just got to find a way to get out of this place” then repeats of “These circles running through my head, Make me feel I’m better off dead, Just got to find a way to get out of this place… Just got to find a way to disconnect from this.” That builds up to a big final blast of the chorus to bring this huge track to a powerful conclusion. Give it a listen below:
Tom tells us that Vukovi have been a massive influence on the band, alongside the like likes of The Wonder Years, Knuckle Puck and Stand Atlantic. While Lauren, who describes their sound as a “sadder Paramore,” adds Frightened Rabbit to the list and told us: “Not musically I guess but lyrically. Scott Hutchinson’s lyrics helped me through the darkest parts of my life recently and is the reason I try to write lyrics that are open and honest. Those lyrics helped me when I struggled. It made me realise how important it could be to hear bands and artists share experiences in such open and honest ways and how much it can help other people.”
And on their writing, Tom adds: “Other music always inspires me to write. Listening to new singles and figuring out their signwriting tricks gives me the motivation to write better for myself. My influences can be heard throughout my writing, I feel it’s the same for the rest of the band.”
Medway are currently working on their third single, which they’ll be tracking in the studio for a few months. They also hope to have gigs, including some postponed dates and new shows, to announce as and when it’s all good to do so.