On the Intricate Inner Workings of the System
On the Intricate Inner Workings of the System
On the Intricate Inner Workings of the System
The Bug Club

On the Intricate Inner Workings of the System

Regular price $10.00 $0.00
Release date: August 30, 2024
Label:  Sub Pop
Catalog #: 71656

Pre-order details

  • LP color may differ slightly from the image.
  • Customers will be given access to stream the full album up to four (4) weeks before release date from your SubPop.com account, with your pre-order of the album on any format. 
  • All pre-orders will also receive any and all pre-release track downloads in advance of the album release as they are made public, which will be available from your SubPop.com account as they become available.
  • All physical pre-order items should ship out from our warehouse in Seattle, WA between 5-8 days before release date, so long as there are no delays in manufacturing that would delay this advance shipping timeline.
  • International orders may not arrive by release day as extra time must be taken into consideration for distance traveled and customs department clearance.

The way you’re saying it, ‘prolific’ isn’t the right word for The Bug Club. You’ve got to say it with the trademark Welsh lilt, and pay due homage to this inimitable band’s origins in the renowned hit factory of Caldicot, South Wales. Do that, and you’re about right with how to summarise a group who’ve released ten singles, two albums, two EPs, three things nobody knew how to describe, and an album under a different band’s name, all since 2021 and while playing 200+ gigs a year.

Third LP On The Intricate Inner Workings Of The System, due 2024 via Sub Pop, sees the band serve up a beefy slab of their speciality Modern-Lovers-meets-Nuggets garage rock. There’s B-52’s call-and-response fun mixed with AC/DC power chord grunt. Leaning towards fast-paced punk, opening double salvo ‘War Movies’ and ‘Quality Pints’ sets out the stall: duel vocal piss taking, surreal takes on everyday topics that go full circle and become profound, riffs all day long and then all the next day too. ‘Quality Pints’ deals with the pressing concerns of any conscientious touring outfit, taking to heart the rule of the three R’s as penned by renowned fellow pints fan Mark E Smith of The Fall. Repetition, repetition, repetition. If it’s that important, which it is, it’s worth saying again. ‘War Movies’ dresses distorted chugging with a comprehensive ‘best of’ list for the genre, with Sam Willmett offering a solo casually chucked out in a way that will make your dad promptly give up any resurgent guitar playing ambitions.

Melody is still ever-present, with the hilariously meta ‘Pop Single’ channelling Ray Davies at his most self aware. You ask for a pop single, that’s what you get - The Bug Club don’t mess about. And it’s this confidently silly strain that gives us ‘Lonsdale Slipons’, which finally sees the UK’s worst ever shoes paid tribute to in song form, and ‘We Don’t Care About That’, which tells us all to stop talking about lots of things. Considering attempting a tentative review of what you’re listening to? Well stop. ‘Better Than Good’ has you covered there, too. You’re getting what you’re given, and thankfully everybody seems happy with that - especially this track’s lo-fi production, Violent Femmes bass and Sterling Morrison solo.  Best to leave the hot takes to The Bug Club, we reckon. This record backs us up.

So, that’s what they’ve been finishing up during their massive month-long break from gigs. In a bid to avoid being branded layabouts, The Bug Club will support their upcoming Sub Pop release with a US tour in September. 

Initially comprising the songwriting core of Sam Willmett (vocals/guitar) and Tilly Harris (vocals/bass) with Dan Matthew (drums), The Bug Club started plying their trade in 2016. They were signed by UK label Bingo Records in Autumn 2020 and first single 'We Don’t Need Room For Lovin’ was released in February 2021. It quickly established The Bug Club as the tongue-in-cheek and live-focused antidote to the previous year’s penned-in pandemic drudgery.  BBC 6 Music’s Marc Riley was an early champion, hammering the single, booking the band in for a session as soon as it was allowed and rightfully praising songwriters capable of singing the whole alphabet in a two-minute song and making it work.

EP Launching Moondream One came next complete with 7”, comic book and free jingles (radio stabs are something of a forte for the band), followed by Pure Particles, whose vinyl release included a board game brimming with cult references. Fed up with the conventional approach they then released ‘Intelectuals’: a standalone track that was actually a five-track ‘song suite’ like some kind of streaming-model-snubbing, Telecaster-bashing answer to Bach. Highbrow musos took a lyrical beating for the ages. Second standalone release ‘Two Beauties’ marked release number two for 2022 and built up to the appearance of debut album Green Dream in F# by October. Lead single ‘It’s Art’ encapsulated The Bug Club’s ethos good and proper: they’re only in this for fun, ‘you’re not supposed to feel it’. But they’re self effacing, because everybody does feel it. And it feels great.

The following January they decided to pull their fingers out, get some disguises and support themselves on tour as Mr Anyway’s Holey Spirits. A live album documented this, then they got abstract with titles and put out picture disc Picture This!. By the autumn of 2023 it was time for forty-seven track, poetry-infused double album Rare Birds: Hour of Song. Their most ambitious realisation on The Bug Club’s creative world so far, typically smart and surreal wordplay (as well as their standard enthusiastic obscenity) met with everything from raucous punk to gentle anti-folk. Ivor Cutler seemed to have left his surreal stamp somewhere - the fully illustrated picture book included with the record helped suggest that - but they’d never heard him until somebody else made the comparison. Happy accidents abound. Things went pair-shaped with Sam and Tilly in 2024 after Dan swapped his sticks for his gardening tools and a quiet life in the countryside. During a trip to America they caught the eye of Sub Pop. And guess what: new music is hurtling towards their ever-growing loyal fanbase who can look forward to a year for The Bug Club with stuff going on, constantly. Who’d have thunk it?

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