SHiiVERS are a London based two-piece making anthemic electro-pop, blending layers of dark synths, grimy basslines, intricate beats and beguiling lyrics. Formed in 2018, the rising synth-pop duo SHiiVERS consist of university friends Tom and Clara who love pop music that tells a story, inspired by everyone from Sylvan Esso to M83, Chvrches to LCD Soundsystem.
When not busy working on new songs, SHiiVERS produce club remixes of their own tracks and others, including the new Lion’s Den Remix of their debut single. “’Animalism’ is about the insincerity of certain relationships and our addiction to dissecting other people’s lives in a cold and detached way,” say the duo, speaking of the track.
To celebrate the release, they’ve pulled together their top 10 animal themed songs.
1. Bloodhound Gang – ‘The Bad Touch’
“Bloodhounds are known for their razor-sharp sense of smell and this gang were on the nose when it came to finding a song that would send my parents nuts. Not only did the lyrics teach me more about the birds and the bees than any biology class could, the video is also a masterpiece. I remember instinctively running man-ing along to that perfect fusion of danceable beats, riffy basslines and informative rap. It clearly made an impression – when I moved to Japan the first thing I bought was a monkey onesie.” – Clara
2. Anderson .Paak – ‘The Bird’
“Malibu was my favourite album for about three years, and is still in my all-time top ten. The opening track sets you up for everything that’s good about the rest of the record – brilliant instrumentation, lush, lazy backing vocals and basslines driving songs forward without taking over. Also the lyrics prove undoubtedly that me and him are kindred spirits. My mum wasn’t ever a professional gambler though. But she was a pretty good supply teacher.” – Tom
3. Guillemots – ‘Little Bear’
“We’ve chosen another album opening track – clearly animal themed songs are great at kicking off records. ‘Little Bear’ is a soaring, orchestral start to an album that hasn’t aged a day. And who doesn’t love the idea of little bears? Except maybe if you’re caught between one and its mother. Although come to think of it, maybe they’re not referring to a baby bear, but a fully grown small bear. That makes more sense, otherwise it would have been called ‘cub’. Extra points to Guillemots for choosing an animal themed band name as well.” – Both
4. Metric – ‘Black Sheep’
“Surely the sexiest song ever written about a sheep? Okay, it’s not about an animal per se, but other choices on our list got double points so we’ll allow it. We love the juxtaposition of that banging heavy riff, the guitar feedback, Emily Haines’ sultry vocals. Mmm Emily Haines… Metric are one of my favourite live bands, with every member playing an equally important and engaging role on stage. And once that light show starts I’m pogoing like a maniac.” – Clara
5. Weezer – ‘Crab’
“Tom thinks this song is about exoskeletons, I’m convinced it’s about lice, but either way the subject matter fades into insignificance because this song kicks off with one headbanger of an intro and just gets better and better. The singer, Rivers Cuomo, allegedly took a vow of sexual abstinence prior to his wedding, which only served to cement one band member’s teenage crush for life. Clara always wants what she can’t have, she’s shellfish like that, ha ha.” – Both
6. Sylvan Esso – ‘Wolf’
“If we could have crowbarred their insanely good ‘Coffee’ into this list we would have, but ‘Wolf’ is an excellent alternative. As a fellow boy-girl two piece, Sylvan Esso are a guiding light for us in everything from choosing great synth sounds to dancing on stage if you’re a lanky guy (go see them live NOW, they’re so good). What’s more I think they’re the only ones on this list who get an animal impression into the actual song! Listen to it from 30 seconds in and tell us that’s not a wolf howl! Double points for that.” – Both
7. Robert Johnson – ‘Hellhound On My Trail’
“My brother introduced this to me. He discovered the blues really early, probably earlier than what’s considered normal for a small child. This is more a song about a beast than an animal, and Johnson’s vocals have haunted me ever since I heard them. There’s a legend that Robert Johnson sold his soul to the devil at a crossroads in order to achieve success. Good to know the music industry’s as tough today as it was in 1937!” – Clara
8. Tame Impala – ‘Elephant’
“Tame Impala are one of the best bands in the world right now, and we cannot wait for them to put out a new album. The greatest thing about ‘Elephant’ is if you close your eyes while it’s playing you can totally imagine an elephant dancing to it. Apparently the song’s really a metaphor for egotistical people, which is a bit harsh on elephants but there you go. More bonus points to Tame Impala for their animal name as well.” – Both
9. Thom Yorke – ‘Black Swan’
“I had to get a Radiohead track on here, so considered ‘Wolf At The Door’, ‘Morning Mr Magpie’ or ‘Weird Fishes / Arpeggi’ but plumped instead for a track from Thom Yorke’s solo material. I have to confess that most of the time I am disappointed when one of them goes off to work on a solo project because that’s time they could have spent working on a new Radiohead record (the selfish bastards). But The Eraser was brilliant, and ‘Black Swan’ is my favourite track from it.” – Tom
10. Villagers – ‘Set The Tigers Free’
“One day I’ll convince Clara to let us try an electro pop cover of this. I saw Villagers at a festival years ago without knowing any of their music and was immediately hooked. This is my favourite song of theirs – the chord progression, the melody line, the lyrics are all flawless, and I still can’t understand why Villagers aren’t way more popular. If you take one thing away from this list of animal songs, it’s to go and listen to more Villagers.” – Tom
You can listen to all Ask the DJ playlists on the FMS Magazine Spotify CHANNEL.
Find SHiiVERS’ playlist below and HERE.