Formed just a year ago in the summer of 2019, Liverpool indie band Sienne has in short order been making a name for themselves on the local music scene. In February, they officially released their debut single “Where is Home?”, which was premiered at the Liverpool vs Manchester United match, then followed up in April with “Coming Alive”. Now they return with “Side By Side“, which drops today. I think it’s their best song yet, and I’ve chosen it as my New Song of the Week. All three songs will be included on the band’s forthcoming debut EP, due out later this year.
The band is comprised of front man and lead singer Calan Nickle, James Rookyard, Richard Taylor andCharlie Skeggs. Nickle and Rookyard were previously with the band Hanover, who called it quits last summer. Their dynamic style of alternative rock is influenced by some of their favorite bands like The Stone Roses, Manic Street Preachers, Blossoms and Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds.
The track begins with a tentative chiming guitar riff, accompanied by Nickle’s plaintive vocals singing of his fears and negative emotions. The music then expands with a mix of fuzz-coated and shimmery jangly guitars, gentle bass and punchy drums, giving the song a dramatic and beautiful anthemic feel. The lyrics touch on the anger that keeps him down: “Two kids caught in a bar fight for the whole world there to see, put that frown away for another day, just wait. And so when all is said and done, you’ll be the lonely one.” But he eventually realizes that, with help, he’ll be alright: “And I know where to go when I’m hoping I’m still on your mind. If you would be so kind, to walk with me side by side.”
Nickle elaborates on his inspiration for “Side By Side”: “I wrote this song just under a year ago after finding clarity from a low point in my life, I found myself asking why I was writing constantly about the negatives. I had a little moment where I began to see things clearer and this song was written as a message to myself to let go of all the rubbish going on in my head and that I should embrace the new things happening. I wanted the song itself to match the lyrics in how it starts as a no holds barred cry for help, and the understanding comes as the song progresses. For me the song itself is a long, long road from being in a bad place to finding clarity and I think it came to life once we’d finished it in the studio, it’s a very personal song and one that defines what we are as a band, it came from nothing, a darker place and ventured forward into the unknown.”
“Side By Side” is a solid track, and a good indication of more quality music to come from this very promising band.