Mar 29, 2021
By Caleb Campbell
Photography by Mia Naome
Charleston-based indie rock band Whitehall have been honing a striking blend of danceable indie rock, both through high-energy live shows and with their 2018 debut full-length LP Ocean Fiction. Following their debut the band returned in 2020 with “Good Guy” and followed in 2021 with “Capsize,” and “New Hampshire,” reintroducing the band’s guitar-heavy style and irrepressible energy ahead of their upcoming sophomore release, Swordfish Catcher. Today Whitehall have shared the final single from the record, “Contingency Plan,” premiering with Under the Radar.
Following the summery reveries of “Capsize” and “New Hampshire,” “Contingency Plan” returns to the band’s driving indie rock roots, opening with raucous buzzsaw riffing and heavy intermittent drum hits. It’s a noisy garage rock combination, contrasted with the ever-bright vocals of frontman Paddy McKiernan. The band walks a razor’s edge between nonchalant chaos and tight precision, all united by the disarming charm of buoyant indie rock hooks. The lyrics walk a similarly deft line, reflecting on McKiernan’s precarious plans for the future and the ever-present knowledge that things could easily fall apart.
Vocalist Paddy McKiernan says of the track, “I started writing “Contingency Plan” when I realized a relationship of mine was beginning to end. All the signs and nerves were there and I worriedly thought “what could possibly happen next?” This song is how I internalized and lived with those emotions for a while.” Check out the track below and pre-order Swordfish Catcher, out April 2nd via Common Ground Collective.