Belfast rock band R51 have begun 2018 with a fresh start. The five piece followed some cryptic messages with the news that R51 is no more and taking its place is Wynona Bleach.
We have always had problems with R51, it was a name that hung around from our teens from a bad in-joke. It got to the stage online where we were being related to guns and cars when our industry friends went searching, and we just felt over the last year that it connected with our music less and less as days went by.
Wynona Bleach put simply, came about from an argument about how Winona Ryder spells her name, and how Nirvana’s Bleach is one of the greatest records of all time.
Melyssa Shannon, Wynona Bleach
They’ve already become Northern Irish favourites following a fruitful couple of years. Their Pillow Talk and No Chill EPs cemented their status, alongside typically heavy and rocking live performances. That success brought them to Reading and Leeds festival thanks to BBC Introducing and even the unique adventure of a 12 date Russian tour that spanned over 5,000 miles.
Keen to kick off the new year with a bang, the name change was announced with a new track and video entitled ‘Eyes Burning’. The track bears many of the hallmarks of their R51 sound, with a big alt rock sound underneath frontwoman Melyssa Shannon’s vocals. The washy shoegaze guitar sound gives way to bigger choruses with a performance video set on a dark sound stage in front of vibrant visuals.
The newly named Wynona Bleach have set their stall out for 2018 early, expect plenty more to come.