One Track Race sets sultry Stoke trio Lucid Waters on route to success

Guest review by The Underground venue manager Lee Barber

In 2023, Lucid Waters were, somewhat subtly, one of the finest bands running amok within the dirty alleyways of Stoke’s music scene. The sultry three piece brings chaos and curiosity wherever they go, often finding themselves becoming the life and soul of whatever bar or venue they may so choose to frequent. Their last release, Cheap Wine, went down a proverbial treat, and is followed up with this latest offering from the Stafforshire based atmospheric trio.

One Track Race is simplistic in its approach but that fools nobody; the song is hard hitting from the off, and laced with an ironic playfulness which both compliments and defies the melancholic tones in Goodwin’s lyrics. The stomping beat and a pounding bass is soon joined by the sharp jangle of Zuccarelli’s guitar, and here we are given a glance of a sound which might feel right at home on BBC 6 Music. The sound of Lucid Waters. 

The song builds with a strict looseness, and you begin to feel there is a cunning contradiction about this band, that sense of playfulness remaining and yet this is seriously good music with a serious message, hidden deep within the undertones of the lyrics.

Drummer and singer Josh Goodwin explains the journey behind the song: “‘In terms of writing music we’re quite laid back really, usually one of us has a hook, whether it be lyrically or a riff in our head, which leads to the three of us just smashing our heads together coming up with something until we’re satisfied with the outcome, which is the reason why our songs have a lot of variety. This song in particular was originally a different song, we played it live a few times under another name, until I rewrote the lyrics and we simplified the song structure, and I’m pretty sure you can tell around what time we wrote the lyrics from the first line alone, certain pop culture references of a time period in which there’s no need to delve any further into.’

Speaking of the production, Goodwin almost makes Lucid Waters’ process sound annoyingly easy and effortless, though we all know the reality is far from such a thing.

“We recorded this song a while ago, it’s been sitting gathering dust of on our hard drives for 12 months now, so we’re releasing this purely out of looking like we’re musical work horses, but reality is we’re all really into procrastination when it comes to studios – we’re all about the gigs,” he explained. “But it was recorded in Al’s spare room at home, so a bedroom recording if you will, that’s the beauty of having a drum machine in your set up, means no hassle trying to record drums.”

Lucid Waters find themselves perhaps unwittingly towards the forefront of the promising list of post-pandemic bands in Stoke, and as the scene rebuilds and reconstructs itself they are perhaps more important than they realise. If One Track Race is anything to go by, then 2024 is looking to be a positively productive one for Lucid Waters, and most certainly an entertaining one for Stoke’s music scene. And besides, ‘Has anyone seen Michael Keaton? Of course not because he’s Batman.’

Released February 9, 2024, listen to One Track Race by Lucid Waters here:

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