Girl Ray release new single "The Way We Came Back" + on tour now in North America

The Way We Came Back will be available on limited edition 7" vinyl on 20th April: "It's cute, I guess," say the band. "You kinda wanna skip to it, you know? Makes you think about arguments but it doesn't make you hate them that much. It's an early, early - we're talking pre-Earl Grey here - banger that we wanted to oil up. A plump cow that needed to be milked. It was one of the first songs Poppy wrote when she was 16 which we all found pretty impressive. Sly arrangement, good vibes here." Girl Ray are currently on their debut US tour before heading out on a full headline UK tour in April: Directed & Filmed by Rita Conry





“...gauzy intertwining vocals and gentle instrumentals cushion the blow of their more biting lyrics.” - Rolling Stone

“...a thrilling, curious debut rife with hooks and sugarspun melodies.” - Boston Globe

“The idea that actual teenagers made an album this sharp and sophisticated and interesting is the kind of thing that should make the rest of us feel bad.” - Stereogum

Girl Ray are thrilled to share the music video for their new 7” single, “The Way We Came Back.” The song was written by frontwoman Poppy Hankin a few years ago when she was only 16 years old, but wasn’t recorded until after the band’s acclaimed debut, Earl Grey, was released last summer. Bassist Sophie Moss shares the following on the new track:

“It’s cute, I guess. You kinda want to skip to it, you know? Makes you think about
arguments but it doesn’t make you hate them that much. It’s an early, early - we’re
talking pre-Earl Grey here - banger that we wanted to oil up. It was one of the first songs
Poppy wrote when she was 16 which we all found pretty impressive. Sly arrangement,
good vibes here.”

The London trio is currently touring North America with Porches, with upcoming stops in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Portland, Seattle, Atlanta, and many other cities. They’ll also be in Austin for SXSW 2018 from March 12th-16th. Today, Girl Ray are very excited to announce their first headlining New York City show at Union Hall on Sunday, March 25th, presented by Brooklyn Vegan. All upcoming tour dates are listed below.

Watch the music video for “The Way We Came Back” via YouTube

Listen to “Trouble” on Bandcamp
Listen to “Stupid Things” on Bandcamp

Listen to Earl Grey via Bandcamp or Spotify

Photo Credit: Nyla Davison

Girl Ray are the sound of that uncertain period in everybody’s life when the rest of it starts to loom large, when feelings are felt more intensely than ever before, and when every decision seems like a fork in the road on your way to adulthood. Being a teenager is a crucible of heightened emotions and transformative confusion from which the “real” you will ultimately emerge, having fallen in love (and out again), outgrown friendships you thought would last forever, and changed in ways you never thought possible. What you typically won’t emerge with, however, is a debut album as richly evocative of the experience as Earl Grey.

Poppy Hankin (Guitar/Vocals), Iris McConnell (Drums) and Sophie Moss (Bass) formed Girl Ray two years ago, when they were still just 16 years old. Aptly enough for a band so young, they owe their existence - at least in part - to a School of Rock-style club Poppy and Sophie signed up for at their North London secondary school. “I think we all expected it to be really fucking epic,” laughs Sophie, “but unfortunately no one was there, there was no Jack Black figure leading us, there weren’t even any teachers - just us and a bunch of classical guitars. It was all very underwhelming, but the important thing was the friendships that formed out of it.”

Prior to that, says Poppy, “Iris and I had tried and failed to put a band together many times over the years. I started playing guitar and writing songs at 11 because my older brother told me that was the age you had to start at if you wanted to be any good, so for a long time I was writing about silly things like school dinner ladies, or bitchy songs about friends who’d annoyed me. But when Sophie joined, that’s when we finally found the right combination.”

She may have started out with throwaway songs about skateboarding and school canteens, but Poppy’s writing - fuelled by a diet of classic pop (ABBA, The Beatles, Todd Rundgren) and wistful, offbeat indie (Gorky's Zygotic Mynci, Cate Le Bon, Neutral Milk Hotel) - soon matured into something far more emotionally nuanced. Girl Ray are the band Belle & Sebastian’s Stuart Murdoch might have dreamt up if he’d turned his hand to pop svengalidom, or the Moldy Peaches after having their mouths washed out with soap - a band whose songs document the dramas of adolescence with a wit and wistfulness far beyond their years.

When it came to their debut album, the trio turned to their friend (and now touring guitarist) Mike O’Malley, who produced both “Trouble” and “I'll Make This Fun.” During the two “intense and insane” weeks they spent at Ramsgate’s Big Jelly studios, recalls Poppy, “we would go to bed at night and dream of the next day’s recording - we all went a bit crazy at times, but I’ve never given myself over so completely to something as I did when we were making the album.”

The result is a record of invention and ambition, whose delicate, sun-dappled melodies dance around the inside of your skull like a flickering zoetrope of memories - some fond, others less so. Beneath the surface of its infectious Hammond organ riff, opening track “Just Like That” is about “falling so hard for someone, and getting tired of the rejection - after a while you start thinking, ‘For fucks’ sake, why is nothing happening?!’” Elsewhere, there are songs dealing with the enduring bonds of friendship (“Don't Go Back at Ten”), the inevitable bouts of self-loathing and self-examination that follow a breakup (“Cutting Shapes”) and the absurd lengths we go to in order to feel close to someone (“Stupid Things”). Finally, there's “Waiting Ages,” an elegiac lament for a friendship drifting in different directions, and a song that Sophie says, “already makes me feel nostalgic, even though it was only written a few months ago - it makes me sad to remember that time is passing.”

It’s an understandable sentiment from a band whose brief career to date has been lived at fast-forward, and which shows no signs of slowing down. If Earl Grey is any indication, however, it’s that for Girl Ray, those fabled “best years of your life” are not behind them, but still to come.

Upcoming Tour Dates:
*w/ Porches

28 - Salt Lake City, UT @ Kilby Court*

01 - Boise, ID @ Neurolux*
02 - Portland, OR @ Analog Theater*
03 - Seattle, WA @ Neumos*
05 - San Francisco, CA @ The Chapel*
06 - San Francisco, CA @ The Chapel*
09 - Los Angeles, CA @ Teregram Ballroom*
10 - Las Vegas, NV @ Neon Reverb Festival
12-16 - Austin, TX @ SXSW 2018
19 - Atlanta, GA @ Masquerade - Purgatory Room*
20 - Durham, NC @ Motorco Music Hall*
21 - Richmond, VA @ Strange Matter*
22 - Washington, DC @ Black Cat*
23 - Brooklyn, NY @ Music Hall of Williamsburg*
24 - New York, NY @ The Bowery Ballroom*
25 - New York, NY @ Union Pool