Saint Alto are a four piece alternative indie folk band. Only a few shows in, Saint Alto has gathered attention for ‘hauntingly beautiful’ songs paired with the drive of indie folk found in artists such a Ben Howard and Bon Iver.
Like going to a church where you suspect nobody is a believer but all are in good voice (and the organ has been switched for a nord). These hymns are broken but beautiful all the same. If Vangellis scored a Ray Lamontagne gig it might sound like this. Guitar, vocals, harmonies, drums and claps are offset with synths, atmospheric swells and bass that rattles the rib cage.
Lyrically addressing human flaws, love, depression, mind games and the ‘oddness’ of modernity, the music is shot through with hope; soaring synths, group harmonies and an impassioned lead vocal described as ‘maybe the best unsigned vocal in the country’. Songs like Manifesto for Suburbia have all the drive, hope and resistance of early Arcade Fire and are offset against songs like Tell Me Something, a broken electronic folk love song with a ‘heartbreakingly pretty, dark and beautiful vocal’. A&R Factory went as far as to say the sound ‘may just prove to be the future of folk’.
The cropped-trousered depressives are made up of Phil Barber, Alex Dodwell, Dave Hammersley and Tom Ridsdill (the latter three recognisable from indie alt pop trio ‘Cinema’).