The epithet is dead. Long live the handshake. Cassels return with latest single When Contemplating Handshakes.

Releasing two feature-length albums in one year is by no means an easy feat. Yet, Oxfordshire-bred family duo Cassels managed to impressively achieve this in 2017. Surprisingly, the band – comprising of Jim and Loz Beck – have immediately returned to writing music. Their new single, When Contemplating Handshakes, marks Cassel’s thirty-eighth upload to Spotify.

The song follows the band’s usual blueprint which opens with a crunchy, angsty, nail-biting monologue of music. From here the song divulges into philosophical absurdism and self-reflection. Heavy stuff, but it works well. Jim’s charisma and charm play to his advantage, transforming the subject matter – in this case, one that I had never really pondered – into a relatable and forlorn feeling.

It’s easy to gush over Cassels, but I have no doubt they’re well on their way to success. With their albums, Foreword and Epithet, the boys seem to have found a niche in the market for nihilistic and emotion-driven pieces. However, it’s time for the band to shift gears and try to really define their sound. I really like the short, spoken-word piece within Contemplating Handshakes, and I personally think it suits them more than the fire-fuelled bite shown in Epithet. But, what really matters to me here, is the fact that they are making music that they want to. It is evident that this is one of their strengths.

With their European tour with Gender Roles later this month, Cassels are sure to debut a couple more singles, if not a new EP in the coming weeks. To be honest, I wouldn’t be shocked if these guys had another full LP ready to launch shortly after the tour.

4/5 Bytes.

Will Wilkins
You can catch Cassels here;
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