Devon band Quorum have honed an anthemic indie rock sound with elements of alternative, pop and punk influences, which they describe as “fresh, current and exciting.”
The Okehampton quartet of Jordan Hookway (vocals,) Jake Hodgson (guitar) Noah Groves (bass) and Mack Hodgson (drums) all went to school together and loved music so it was “almost inevitable” they would end up playing in a band together.
They started playing music together in 2016 and eventually launched Quorum with the release of debut EP Art Is Dead two years later. They released three singles last year before releasing their debut album, the seven-track The Death of Intellectual Success, at the end of June.
On the sound they’ve honed since, the band told us: “Vibrantly different yet uniquely familiar. Our sound has evolved over the past couple of years into something that we think is absolutely our own.”
The album’s first full track is the intoxicating Could We Be Different, which opens up with an atmospheric instrumental section that drop into Jordan’s engaging vocals over light instrumentals. It picks up pace as the vocals intensify through the chorus, which give way to another instrumental section. A second chorus drops into repeating guitars, then a building atmospheric section gives way to a final blast of the chorus. Give it a listen here:
The album is packed with indie goodness, including title track The Death of Intellectual Success, which features engaging lyrics around the topic of ‘celebrity’ alongside twinkling guitars, and the rockier You Said.
Those two tracks are sandwiched by the album’s lead single Still Can’t See, which opens up with stabbing guitars that continue under a light lick. Jordan’s laid-back vocals take over alongside a bubbling bassline and light guitars then stabbing bass sets up a more atmospheric chorus. Check it out in the video below:
The album goes out in style with Sea Breeze, which is probably a personal favourite track from the album. It opens up with light guitars over a twinkling lick that continue under Jordan’s opening vocals “She said I want to breathe, The fresh air and the sea breeze, It’s all going to get better, This is what I want to do.”
The pace increases as it flies into a lively chorus, before dropping back into the light guitars and engaging echoey vocals. A second chorus drops into light vocals that build up to a more intense chorus, which brings the album to a lively conclusion. Give it a listen here:
On the album, the band told us: “The initial reception has been really good. We released Still Can’t See in advance of the full EP released and have gained good press, a lot of radio play and the video has had 7.5k views.
“If you haven’t heard it yet then it’s a 7-track journey showcasing a one point perspective into individual and societal regression, featuring 5 full tracks plus an instrumental prologue and somnolent. Sonically it’s super crisp and clean and musically it’s indie, edgy and fresh.”
The Quorum sound has been inspired by a wide range of genres. As the band explain: “Everyone in the band has really wide ranging and eclectic musical tastes and we hope that you can hear that within our music. We listen to so much different stuff from current indie and chart music through to rock, punk, rock and roll and so much more.”
And on what influences them to write music, they continue: “Probably like most bands we write about life experiences, emotions and things that are generally happening to us or around us. We jot down notes or phrases and sometimes they become songs and sometimes they remain memories. The Death Of Intellectual Success was written during the first lockdown and our adaptation and response to that enforced change is encapsulated in the project.”
There’s plenty more to come from Quorum, who hope to be back in the studio towards the end of the year. Ahead of that, they have a full schedule of gigs , which begin in Tavistock next Friday (20 August) and a tour that takes in Exeter, London, Nottingham, Newcastle and Manchester early next month. All details are on their website.
The band told us: “We are really looking forward to getting on stage and to sharing our new music with everyone. We hope that people enjoy listening to The Death Of Intellectual Success as much as we love playing it and that people can find something within the music and the lyrics that resonates with them.”
Image rights: Chloe Pollard