Aberdeen quartet Cold Years have today released a cover of Lizzo’s Good As Hell. The track features the RR Gospel Choir.
The song is released in partnership with the Scottish Association for Mental Health, with a limited-edition t-shirt on sale, with all profits going to SAMH.
Speaking of their sing-a-long epic guitar version of the song, Cold Years frontman Ross Gordon shares “We really wanted to do something for people who are struggling right now. This pandemic has ruined everyone’s perceptions of themselves and the outside world. So many people were already struggling before it even hit. This song fights back at anything that knocks you down. So many people have lost so much over the past few months and this song is about picking yourself back up and getting out there. We felt it was really important to raise awareness to the great work the SAMH has been doing, not only during the pandemic but since 1923 helping Scotland get through the hard times.”
“We’ve been wanting to do a cover for a while and Good As Hell is such a fun song for us reimagine in our way” continues Gordon. “We adore Lizzo, she’s one of the most incredibly talented people on this earth and her music brings so much joy to the soul. We know several people who have been directly affected by body dysmorphia and this song fights back at that and shows strength. Lizzo has done so much for self-love & empowerment, something the world needs more of rather than bringing each other down. We were overwhelmed at the opportunity work with the RR Choir gospel choir on the cover. They’ve performed with so many incredible artists like Stormzy, Taylor Swift, George Michael, Iggy fuckin’ Pop and getting to make music with a gospel choir has always been a dream of ours.”
As the true sound of worldwide youth disaffection post-Trump and post-Brexit, the songs of Paradise – a sarcastic snarl aimed at the band’s remote hometown – burst from the speakers with a ‘clear eyes, full hearts, can’t lose’ spirit. Spring-boarding off timelessly vintage-tinged sounds and fuelled by lung-busting choruses buffed-up through a modern-day, blue-collar punk rock sheen, Paradise captures the anger and frustration vocalist Ross Gordon feels for a generation in decline.
Echoing the infamous, despairing – it’s shite being Scottish – rant made by protagonist Renton in Irvine Welsh’s 1993 novel, Trainspotting, Cold Years frontman Ross Gordon’s near-nihilistic take on the town where he was born goes further still, almost three decades and a generation later. Rather than succumb to the pitfalls that laid waste to previous generations, however, he poured all of his grievances into his band’s debut showcase, Paradise – 13 songs of passion and belief that unapologetically breathe the redemptive fire of rock’n’roll.
“There’s an ongoing narrative about how fucked everything is at the moment,” Gordon says of the thread that ties otherwise disparate themes together. “It links everything, really, not just purely politics: It’s linked to the economy, to drugs and alcohol, and what our generation is going through right now. You work hard in school, you train for your career and you try to succeed at it, but the reality is that none of it really fucking matters. It’s a record that’s angry because, as a generation, we feel like we’ve been sold short.”
Naturally, the creation of an album instilled with such an inflamed sense of injustice didn’t come without its difficulties. It was a challenging process that often tested the collective patience of the quartet, completed by guitarist Finlay Urquhart, bassist Louis Craighead, and drummer Fraser Allan. But such was the passion that each member invested into it, paired with an indomitable spirit, that the band has made good on the past few years of promise. Rather than rushing out a record for the sake of expediency, taking time to reflect, be honest, and pour everything the band had into the process has made for a set of songs that will endure and stand the Scots in admirable stead. After all, you only get one shot at making your first album, so you better make it the best it can be.
Considering the unforgiving, harsh, and often dismal depths from which Paradise was born, it’s an album that strives for optimism, and Cold Years know who they are and staying true to their roots. And despite a journey ahead that promises to send them far and wide, they won’t ever forget where they came from even if it is rubbish.
“I went through a divorce, different jobs, different flats, different girls … And I tried to cover everything that’s happened in the past few years,” Gordon says of the self-examination he underwent on these tracks. “I really am grateful for the opportunity that we’ve got. Every single day. It’s a huge thing. It’s going to be a lot of work, but it’s meant to be hard because nothing worthwhile doing is ever easy. We worked really hard on this record. We had to, and I’m proud of it.”
Cold Year’s and Scottish Association for Mental Health limited-edition t-shirt is on sale now, with all profits going to SAMH (Link Here). Further information about the Scottish Association for Mental Health is available on their website. Stay up to date with al Cold Year news, releases and much more via their Facebook page and Twitter from where they tweet as @coldyearsband.