10 Songs, 28 Minutes


About Girls Names

The Belfast, Ireland group Girls Names formed in 2009, initially as a duo consisting of guitarist/vocalist Cathal Cully and novice drummer Neil Brogan. They started off with a noisy sound that nodded to old-school indie pop acts like Beat Happening, Field Mice, and Josef K. Bassist Claire Miskimmin, whom Cully had to teach the basics of her instrument before she joined, was brought on board as a full-fledged member of Girls Names the following year. Girls Names' demos were released on cassette tape on the Belfast-based label Cass/Flick soon after they formed, and their first mini-album, You Should Know by Now, was released on Tough Love in the spring of 2010. A 12" EP on Captured Tracks, Don't Let Me In, followed soon after. The band signed to Slumberland and early in 2011 released their debut album Dead to Me. After releasing a split single with the band Weird Dreams in 2012, they added another guitarist, Phil Quinn (from the band Charles Hurts), to the lineup and began working on a new album. The first single, the nearly eight-minute-long "The New Life" (with a remix by J.D. Twitch of Optimo on the B-side)," signaled a change to a more expansive, post-punk-influenced sound. Their second album, The New Life, was released in early 2013 by Tough Love in the U.K. and Slumberland in the U.S. Soon after the album, Brogan left the band and was replaced by Gib Cassidy of Logikparty. After the tour for New Life ended, the band decamped to an isolated cottage for a week to write their next album. After more touring and honing of material, they hit the studio in a more experimental mood. Their third album, My Arms Around a Vision, reflected this new outlook, presenting a more dynamic post-punk approach. It was released by Tough Love in October of 2015. Following its release, the band headed out on tour to support it, but a year later Cassidy left the band. After recording at various locations including Cully's house, rehearsal spaces, and Belfast's Start Together Studios, a fourth album was mixed and finished, before being culled after financial struggles took a toll on the group, forcing them to go back to their day jobs and put the album on hold. By the end of 2017, the group returned to the aborted mixes and re-edited, re-recorded, and remixed the album. The resulting eight-track release, Stains on Silence, was issued in mid-2018. ~ Margaret Reges