Southend, U.K.-based rock group Asylums combine fuzzy rock riffs with pop structures, while pointing a sarcastic finger at social trends. The project began when longtime friends Luke Branch (vocals/guitar) and Jazz Miel (guitar) launched a D.I.Y. label, Cool Thing. They quickly realized that, without a solid reputation or any funding, they would struggle to sign anyone. So they set up their own band, inviting Mike Webster (bass) and Henry Tyler (drums) along for the ride. As a four-piece, Asylums' sound borrowed from the likes of Ash, Weezer, Supergrass, and Pavement. Their D.I.Y. ethos permeated everything they pursued, with all of the members funding their ventures as a band and as a label, holding down eight part-time jobs between them to raise the money. From 2014 to 2016 they released six singles, including their debut, "The Death of Television"; their breakout single, "Joy in a Small Wage"; and "Necessary Appliances," the lead single from their debut album. With every release their popularity grew, securing radio play on BBC Radio 1 and XFM. Amidst their busy live schedule they found time to piece together their debut full-length, Killer Brain Waves. The album maintained a sense of cynicism toward society, but did so with their typical tongue-in-cheek attitude. Killer Brain Waves was self-released in 2016. ~ Liam Martin
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