'Quarantunes' with Oh Wonder

We're getting recommendations from our favourite artists, seeing which tracks, or 'Quarantunes' are helping them traverse this strange new world. Next we hear from Josephine Vander Gucht and Anthony West of pop duo Oh Wonder.
Posted: 19 June 2020 Words: John Bell

Britain's favourite pop pairing Oh Wonder have been pretty busy during lockdown. Not satisfied with just the one release this year, having dropped their Top 10-charting third album No One Else Can Wear Your Crown back in February, Josephine Vander Gucht and Anthony West set to work early on a new homemade EP. 

Home Tapes is inspired by a life of lockdown, and radiates reassurance and empathy in the shimmering and minimal style of pop that the couple are loved for. "In this unprecedented period of confusion and loneliness," they said of the project, "we wanted to contribute to the world's efforts to make sense of it all, in the only way we know how." The heart-warming video for 'Oceansize', the EP opener, shows a collection of OW fans showing what they're looking forward to most when life returns to normal, from visiting pen pals to proposing to a partner. 

Putting their own prolific writing schedule aside for a moment, we heard from the duo about the other songs that have provided them with solace during these difficult last three months, soundtracking dog walks and work outs. The first three selects are from Josephine and the rest are from Anthony. 

Orlando Weeks - Safe In Sound 

Every day I take my dog for a walk and I try to listen to a new album. This week I listened to A Quickening by Orlando Weeks (from the Maccabees) and it's really lush. The artwork is so beautiful. He's also an amazing visual artist – I'm a big fan! 

Agnes Obel - 'Can't Be'

I always return to Agnes Obel when I need to be comforted. We saw her play the Barbican back in 2014 and listening to her always takes me back to that show. It was so still and intense and focused, and her music always calms and roots me. I love the rhythmic drone and backing vocals in this song; so hypnotising. 

SG Lewis - 'Chemicals'

I've been working out loads during lockdown and this tune gets me lifting heavier weights when I need some extra energy! 

Bon Iver - 'Hey Ma'

Hearing the first of new music from one of your favourite artists can either fill you with elation or disappointment. So far, Justin Vernon has never given us anything but joy. His music always leaves us in awe and 'Hey Ma' is no exception.

Jacob Collier - 'All I Need (with Mahalia & Ty Dolla $ign)'

There’s no one who knows groove or harmony like this man. This is the first song we’ve listened to in lockdown that immediately made us want to run out into the streets and dance with our neighbours.

Still Woozy - Window 

We’ve been listening to Still Woozy since his early releases and these new tunes are bringing so much light to lockdown life. 'Window' literally forces our windows wide open, filling our front room with sun and groove.

No One Else Can Wear Your Crown and Home Tapes are out now on Island Records. Click here to listen to more of Oh Wonder. 

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