I first met Greta Carroll and Nick Delap back in 2015. Yes it was for an interview but once we were done, the dictaphone was packed away and the drinks kept flowing. In all my time writing about music they’re two of the most human people I’ve met; I vivid remember popping to the toilet and arriving back at the table to find Carroll engaging in a conversation with a stranger, natural as ever. Delap on the other hand always offered to get me a drink as soon as my beer got even close to the base of the glass.
They soon signed a record deal with Bella Union, released their debut album and played one of the most emotive shows I’ve ever seen at St. Margaret’s Church. Back then they were called Bernard & Edith and that show was seriously in doubt, Delap having just come through an extremely serious heart operation. It’s no understatement to refer to that evening as a miracle. The show started with Carroll and Delap sharing the most heartfelt embrace I’ve ever seen, before Delap took a seat to play, too weak to stand.
Nearly three years on from that formative evening and the duo now find themselves on Sunday Best Records with a new name, Pearl City. That alias has brought them more success than ever, indeed their last single ‘Down by the Tree’ was lauded by Mary Anne Hobbs, the celebrity DJ even inviting Carroll on to her show to speak about the track.
This Friday (June 8) sees them follow-up ‘Down by the Tree’ with ‘Taste Me’, the latest taste – see what I did there? – from upcoming EP ‘Gold Metal Money.’ Atop whirring synths and soothing wind chimes, Carroll delivers her most seductive vocal yet, urging a love interest to “taste me under the apple tree.” Her voice is a life source of its own, it’s rich, deep range taking cues from her absolute idol Nina Simone – Carroll’s the only person I know who can actually take on a Simone song. Hi-hats soon join the party as Carroll’s Manchester accent eeks out singing ‘Now I’m a child.’ The seductive whisper erupts into a wail by the end, hinting that Carroll has now reached the sexual climax she so desired.
Speaking of the song, Carroll says: “Taste me is a translation of a woman’s sexual liberation, the lustful yearning for forbidden fruit and being unchained from body image. About growing into and allowing our own desires to be fulfilled, breaking free from the male gaze and trusting our own magnetic pull towards what we want. Using the Garden Of Eden Apple tree as a gateway to the twists and turns of power between sexual partners.”
Gold Metal Money is out July 19 on Sunday Best Records.