‘Jogging/Neon Sway’ is an absolutely immersive and magic single from Birmingham band Wray – gentle bubbling dream pop with shimmering guitars and haunting melancholic vocals: it hits all the right buttons. And it subverts expectations – distorted voices echo in and out and a synth wash interpolates the structure.

The band describes the song as a ‘Motorik Beat’ with a bit of grit and ‘polished by synths’. There is certainly a neon-lit eighties air about it – from the same thread as bands like M83 – but with a indie edge.

David Brown says of the lyrics:

The lyrics to this track are about growing up in the suburbs, here in Birmingham, and the hopes and dreams that I once shared with a dear old friend, a friend that I lost through opioid addiction.

This poignancy infuses the song, with its dreamy coda – the psychedelic neon forming that follows the jogging, a Sigor Ros-type exit. The accompanying video by Bárbara Baron is fittingly enigmatic:

This is for me one of the most exciting releases of the year so far and exciting to come across Wray. The song comes off the band’s forthcoming album ‘Stream of Youth/Blank World’ out on 5 June 2020 through Earth Libraries: you can preorder here.

I’m new to the band – and all the poorer for that – but you should check out their previous album ‘Hypatia’ too: it’s rather good:

Wray are  lead singer/bass player David Brown, guitarist David Swatzell, and drummer Blake Wimberly.