Track Of The Week – Tom Joshua – Suckers

Teesside-born singer-songwriter Tom Joshua unveils the follow-up to his debut EP ‘Undergrowth’ with a second volume, out now, featuring introspective alternative versions from last year’s release, alongside two brand new tracks. 

Recorded in collaboration with Frightened Rabbit’s Andy Monaghan at his Glasgow studio towards the end of last year, and featuring new tracks ‘Suckers’ and ‘Killer Bee’ the ‘Undergrowth EP Vol.2’ sees Tom explore a lo-fi and understated sound, channeling influences such as Big Thief, Elliot Smith and Aldous Harding. 

“Suckers is a song I’ve had for years. It was one of them ones that Just sort of rolled hopelessly off the tongue. A self help tune to give myself or friends who are going through it, a little reminder that things could be worse, I like to think Fred Rogers might sing it via a wise shy puppet or something that would be. Most rock and roll.” said Tom. 

“I play it regularly at live shows and I consider it to be a moment where I get to be honest and connect to an audience at my most vulnerable. I’ve tried to record it a couple times before but struggled to capture the feeling, it always feels like a song that benefits from me being alone in my room or at a show at the peak of my nerves.” explains Tom. He added, “With the ep I set out to do something more basic I wanted to pare things back to the sound of an acoustic and the cello, so much of my time has been spent with myself and my cellist Harriet trying to figure out how to make a nice sound with those two things for live shows.”

“I wanted to empty things out a bit more and for the songs to sound a bit more like how they start. I Listened to a lot of Arthur Russel in lockdown and admired how unfinished and collated his music is. I guess the ep was really about looking at things the other way round.”

The new songs book-end reworked downbeat versions of previous singles ‘Knock on a Hollow’ and EP title track ‘Undergrowth’, exploring their more delicate and introverted sides. 

Tom’s love of harmonies stems from an early appreciation of Simon and Garfunkel, Fleetwood Mac and more recently Sigur Ros, melded together with potent lyricism inspired by favourites such as Nick Drake and Feist. There’s an innate warmth to Tom’s writing that invites you to be part of the story; part of his world, and welcome no matter what.