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Black Honey - A Fistful of Peaches (Album Review)

Friday, 24 March 2023 Written by Craig Howieson

Photo: Jamie Noise

There are few places scarier than the confines of your own mind. We are, for the most part, our own worst enemies: overly critical, self-loathing and holding ourselves to standards higher than anyone around us would expect us to meet. 

As Brighton four-piece Black Honey embark on their third album ‘A Fistful Of Peaches’ we find guitarist and vocalist Izzy Bee Phillips addressing these exact issues, and her life as a neurodivergent person, on her way towards feeling OK with who she finds staring back at her in the mirror. 

From the heavy rolling intro of Charlie Bronson, where Royal Blood-style riffs collide with Madonna's pop sensibilities (with a Vogue-evoking spoken word section to boot), the band throw themselves into a heady rush of heavily carbonated pop-rock and indie anthems as Phillips implores the listener to give themselves a break.

There are some heavy themes on the record but they flash in front of your eyes before a backdrop of supermassive proportions. Cut The Cord bops along to hi-hat snaps before igniting into a chorus that would rival The Killers for a festival sing along. 

And while we are on the topic, much has been made in the music press of the ‘pipeline’ and the problems with representation for women and non-binary folks on festival line-ups. While the arguments that more needs to be done at all levels to nurture diversity are absolutely spot on, Black Honey are proof that there are already bands here, ready and waiting for their shot. That's not a pipeline problem, that’s lazy bookers. 

‘A Fistful Of Peaches’ sounds like a crossover moment for the band. The smoother edges may irk some, but the likes of Tombstone are still punk enough to silence detractors. You also can’t help but feel the band is intentionally reaching for another level on this record. These are 12 tight tracks that are as creative as they are bold. 

Paired with Phillips’ unflinching documentation of her journey towards being more comfortable spending time with her thoughts, it is an album worthy of wider exposure. And when the larger venues and festivals come knocking, it will be long overdue. 

Black Honey Upcoming Tour Dates are as follows:

Fri March 24 2023 - BEDFORD Bedford Esquires
Sun March 26 2023 - BIRMINGHAM O2 Academy2 Birmingham
Wed March 29 2023 - BRISTOL Thekla
Fri March 31 2023 - BRIGHTON Chalk
Sat April 01 2023 - NOTTINGHAM Rescue Rooms
Sun April 02 2023 - SHEFFIELD Foundry
Tue April 04 2023 - MANCHESTER Gorilla
Wed April 05 2023 - NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE Newcastle University Students Union
Thu April 06 2023 - GLASGOW Classic Grand
Sat April 08 2023 - LIVERPOOL District
Sun April 09 2023 - STOKE Sugarmill
Tue April 11 2023 - SOUTHEND Chinnerys
Wed April 12 2023 - LONDON KOKO

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