S.C.U.M. – Whitechapel (Mute)



East London’s S.C.U.M. have released the second single from their debut album ‘Again Into Eyes’. It’s a lot more ‘synthwave’ and a lot less gothic than their back catalogue, yet just as arty and interesting. It goes by the name of ‘Whitechapel’.

‘Whitechapel’ conjures up a musical argument between work and rest. The introduction to the song takes its time to create a misty, swaying wave of synthesis to accompany Thomas Cohen’s daydreaming vocals. The prominent bass line and percussive rhythms pick up and patiently build until a fully formed disco beat has landed.

The differentiation between the energy and tightness provided by the bass and drums drive perfectly beneath the slow, swirling vocals and synths. There is also certain flamboyancy about Cohen’s expression that I can relate to that of Suede’s Brett Anderson.

Think of a scenario where John Foxx and Bauhaus were challenged to write a sequel to Pulp’s ‘Disco 2000’. The end product is ‘Whitechapel’.

The single has been edited (sadly) to a much shorter running time than the full album version (3:21, down from 6:01) and goes straight for the jugular, as opposed to naturally flowing musically, which I think loses a bit of its feel and impact to the listener. However, I enjoyed this single on the whole and I am sure it will contribute to a great year for S.C.U.M. and further.


God is in the TV is an online music and culture fanzine founded in Cardiff by the editor Bill Cummings in 2003. GIITTV Bill has developed the site with the aid of a team of sub-editors and writers from across Britain, covering a wide range of music from unsigned and independent artists to major releases.