TopHats – Eyes On The Prize

I’m fortunate to have a beloved who doesn’t take any interest in Valentines Day. She sees the day as a cynical way to sell overpriced trash, and believes it’s how you conduct yourself the rest of the year that counts. No wonder I married this deep deep pool of wisdom. So perhaps with that attitude in mind, I have to applaud TopHats for releasing their debut track Eyes On The Prize on such a love it/hate it marmite kind of day. To my ear, the song features a darker side of this love and romance game.

There’s clearly a touch of the cynicism and observation of Alex Turner within this TopHats track Eyes On The Prize, as the song is about a lad who is more than a tad too fixated on a girl, whereas the target of his affections simply wants to have a great night out getting p1ssed and having fun with her friends. I guess the track shows just how annoying (and worse) infatuation can be and how difficult unwanted affection can feel.

The track has a jaunty bouncy swagger, but it has a distinctly uncomfortable edge too. Listen up people, there’s an important message here. He sees it as a game of cat and mouse whereas she is starting to get a bit creeped out and annoyed by the attention.

When I saw TopHats (Alfie Bull, Charlie Shaw, Hugo Clear, Max Broadhead) live at their first gig in Huddersfield’s Northern Quarter, I thought this would be a well worthwhile band to follow. This debut single has not disappointed in the slightest.

Live I remembered a solid ear for the beat, an interesting slant on the lyric, and this debut TopHats track is tight as f. Not just in one area but in the whole range; be it vocals, guitar, drums or bass.

The production too is worth a mention as it has a good crisp and lush sound to it. Kudos to Vibration Studios in Crosland Moor Huddersfield, and Paddy Spence Lewis on production (also bass player of a band I often hear other musicians rate highly Quentin).

So let’s sum it up; TopHats Eyes On The Prize is a total bit of quality, and bodes well for a solid future for this band. Look out for TopHats; they are far more likely to throw you a bowler than a helmet.

Chris R

* images taken from the band’s own social media. The full band images are from the super talented Louis Ashby


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