For fans of nihilism, self-loathing and long walks on the beach
Exit Child are set to headline The Exchange in Bristol in April and play 2000trees festival in July
Exit Child’s debut single ‘Dormant’ is launched today in true DIY fashion with a torment-fuelled, self-directed music video. “‘Dormant’ sort of just spilled out of me one day when I was staying in a mental health crisis house,” says vocalist and guitarist Anya Pulver of the gut-pummelling track. “I actually kind of loathed my relationship with music at that time and almost resented my compulsion to write. I had fallen out of love with it for the first time since I can remember. I felt music had given up on me and I gave up on myself all over again.
My life felt stagnant, which was also palpable in the world around me. I was navigating loss and the trauma that triggered, amid the tempest of a global pandemic.
The song journeys through the torment of being trapped within the confines of your mind, the pain of powerlessness and the agony of the absence of autonomy; the state of feeling stuck, suspended, slowed down – dormant. It was a deep reflection on myself and my mental health, of how I’d spent so many years focusing on trying to fix all the parts of me that were ‘broken’ and in doing so losing touch with all of the characteristics that truly define who I am.
It’s so easy to become caught up in diagnoses and therapies and self-improvement and to forget that you are so much more than your traumas and afflictions. In losing touch with who you are, I think you invite the loss of people who love who you are, which can swiftly lead to the lashes of bitterness and abandonment that seep through in the song.
‘Dormant’ is ultimately a snapshot of a cycle of despair and hope – it rises to a drastic realisation of dormancy and the desperation to break out from it, the revelation that you are who you are because that’s who you’re trying to be, even if it defies who you want to be or who you thought you were. But then it finishes with an unsettling ambiguity of submission to the constant questioning of what is right or wrong or whether we even have the strength or power to affect change.
I believe that, in order to rebuild and become everything we want to be, we have to let go of everything we are – but that can be really fucking hard. It is okay to cry, to grieve and to hurt but it is also important to know that we can turn our tears into art, our grief into growth and our pain into beauty.”
The grunge overtones that saturate Exit Child’s darkly emotive music are bound by gritty riffs, graceful melodies, rhythmic compulsion and truly impassioned vocals. Created by former Sœur guitarist and vocalist, Anya Pulver, Exit Child are a band who stand with the disillusioned of their time – encapsulating both suffering and hope; the pain of disempowerment and the beauty of empowerment. Sœur made an indelible mark on the UK music scene pre-Covid with performances at Reading & Leeds, 2000trees and with the likes of Yonaka, IDLES, Vukovi, and Demob Happy. Their music was spun on BBC Radio 1 and 6Music, as well as Kerrang! Radio, and they featured in national music publications from Kerrang! to Total Guitar, capturing the imagination of many a music fan along the way.
Exit Child will play their first live show in their hometown of Bristol at The Exchange on 14 April and they’ve also been announced on the line-up for 2000Trees festival in July.
14 April The Exchange, Bristol – debut live appearance