Tuesday, 21 August 2012


Crywank is the god of sad songs. Crywank (James Clayton) is from Manchester (I think), and has been crywanking since 2009. To date, he's put out three albums and a handful of demos.

Crywank is one of a kind. Truly unique. There's a fair bit of folk-punk influence (from the likes of Andrew Jackson Jihad and Paul Baribeau) and a hint of The Smiths, but neither is really defining. Crywank began as the result of the end of a relationship Mr. Clayton was in. This spawned the songs on his first album (though some also appear on a demo prior to it), James Is Going To Die Soon. This is the audio embodiment of the morning after a break-up: hungover, empty, and in deep contemplation. But still more than that. I don't know what I'm saying anymore. New direction. Whether or not James knew how to play guitar before this is irrelevant. He's banging the shit out of an out-of-tune, cheap-as-hell acoustic guitar, and barely forming coherent chords half the time. Instead, he's hitting a ton of muted strings while trying to play a few notes (though he does let the occasional clear chord slip out, especially during quieter parts) while playing what sounds like some folk-y strumming patterns, if the person playing them has no idea how to play. And all of this is beautiful. And of course, the vocals. They can go from strained and screamed to sung and remorseful, and anywhere in between. His vocal skills are not that much better than his guitar skills, yet they work. It all works, and is coated in an air of introspection. This is due in part to the lyrics, some of the best beautiful ever. They are not laced with fancy wordings or elaborate descriptions and observations. They do not consist of flowery language or impeccable flow. They don't need to. They're as blunt as can be, and are absolutely piercing to the mind, body, heart, and soul. It's like having all your insides laid out in front of you. So revealing, and sadly relatable.

He posted I Daren't Call This Stoner on his blog last year (2011) with this captioned: "Me Ric and Tom got high and recorded some songs together a while back. I’ve finally split them apart and uploaded them. This isn’t a new album so sorry if this gets your hopes up, it’s literally just me pretty blazed singing some covers and a couple of new songs and talking inbetween some tracks. There’s spaces between the tracks which there shouldn’t be as some run into each other and the recording quality is pretty poor but you may enjoy it. We originally intended to release the whole recording with the larger conversations between tracks but a lot of it ended up not making sense unless you know us… and it’s pretty lame at points as well!"

Narcissist On The Verge Of A Nervous Breakdown is Crywank's second album (not counting the demo). It was released in 2012. On this album, it's clear that James' technical skills have increased profoundly (though they still are far from perfect). However, that does not take away from the magic of Crywank. This album is still heart shattering, but in a different way. For one, it's more somber. It's not as aggressive in terms of playing (there's more fingerpicking and light strumming than string bashing) and singing (he actual sings as opposed to howling). The lyrics do not focus on a specific topic, but rather a more broad one, and that is the self. Lyrically, the immediate "open wound" thing going on on his previous album has shifted to the long-term dwelling on the things being discussed, providing a different perspective, one that's very introspective. I suppose. I'm not really sure why I'm attempt to analyse and provide descriptions of his stuff. Nobody reads this anyway, right? And this stuff is amazing, what more needs to be said? Download away.

The Tour Demos 2013 info taken from his Bandcamp: These are the tour demos for the January Crywank tour. They are also the first recordings with Crywanks new member Dan 'The Snail' Watson. It features songs from the upcoming third album and new recordings of older songs with percussion. All money from this release will go towards future tours in 2013 and recording the new album :)

1. Welcome To Castle Irwell
2. Harvey Milk Shit On The Table
3. Thomas Saunders Gang Chant
4. Zains, Cam4, Wah-Wah And Sirens
5. Welcome To Castle Irwell (Live To Curious & Drunk Neighbours)

1. Welcome To Castle Irwell
2. You Won't Meet A Girl Sat In Your Room Listening To Music (But Some Songs Can Still Give You Butterflies)
3. Pope Alexander
4. 18
5. Hikkomori
6. An Intimate Message
7. Late Night People Watching
8. Harvey Milk Shit On The Table
9. Zains, Cam4, Wah-Wah And Sirens
10. Thomas Saunders Gang Chant

1. Welcome To Castle Eughggughghgughg
2. Talking 1
3. I Dance To Trance In Garbage Pants (Daggermouth)
4. Talking 2
5. Thomas Saunders Lloyd Weber
6. Talking 3
7. Youreyeah (Title Fight)
8. Little Creepy
9. Ms Jackson (Outkast)
10. Talking 4
11. Break Stuff (Limp Bizkit)
12. Talking 5
13. Graph Paper (Algorhythms)
14. Talking 6
15. Not The Story So Far
16. Talking 7
17. The Story So Far (New Found Glory)

1. Blink
2. Now I'm Sad (Boo Hoo)
3. Little Creepy
4. Thomas Saunders Lloyd Weber
5. Care Not For Your Clubnights
6. Nostril Tampon
7. The Only Way I Could Save Myself Now Is If I Start Firebombing
8. Chuck & Buck, Suck & Fuck!
9. It's OK, I Wouldn't Remember Me Either
10. Deep Down I'm Really Kirk Van Houten
11. You Couldn't Teach Me Integrity

Tour Demos 2013 (2013)
1. Waste/I Am A Familiar Creak In Your Floorboards
2. Only Everyone Can Judge Me
3. An Intimate Message
4. Chuck & Buck, Suck & Fuck!
5. GB Eating GB While Listening To GB
6. Hikkomori
7. Memento Mori
8. I'm A Cliché
9. Pope Alexander
10. Notches
11. Privately Owned Spiral Galaxy

1. Memento Mori
2. Song For A Guilty Sadist
3. If I Were You I'd Be Throwing Up
4. Notches
5. Crywank Are Posers
6. Obsessive Muso With No Friends
7. “Who is Thomas Saunders and why is he significant in your writings?”
8. Only Everyone Can Judge Me
9. GB Eating GB Whilst Listening To GB
10. Deep Down I'm American Werewolf
11. Waste
12. I am A Familiar Creak In Your Floorboards
13. Do You Have PPE For Self-Esteem?
14. This Song Title Was Too Long (So Now It's Shorter)
15. Leech Boy
16. I Am Shit
17. I'm A Cliché
18. Just A Snail

1. Love
2. Nostril Tampon
3. We Don't Practice
4. Olivers Theme
5. Paperclip
6. Coffee and Blunts

1. I Am A Familiar Creek In Your Floorboards
2. Is That Crazy Enough For Ya'? Want Me To Take A Shit On The Floor?
3. I Don't Know About What Happened... (Because Once You Start Writing It All Becomes Fiction)
4. Welcome To Castle Irwell (Demo)
5. Zains, Cam4, Wah-Wah and Sirens (Demo)
6. Pope Alexander (Demo)
7. Lepidopterophobia
8. Hikikomori (Demo)
9. 18 (Demo)
10. Thomas Saunders Gangchant (Demo)
11. Blur
12. I Am A Familiar Creak In Your Floorboard (Demo)
13. Drunk & Lonely On A Sofabed
14. Thomas Saunders Lloyd Webber (Demo)
15. Coffee & Blunts (Demo)
16. Lepidopterophobia (Demo)


  1. Ah! I've been looking for his stuff forever! Thank you and nice analysis, I liked your comment at the end, whether or not anybody reads your posts. I always do though :)

  2. What happened to the anarchist pizza society album? :(

  3. Please upload "Don't Piss On Me, I'm Already Dead"

  4. Hey please upload the new album is pretty cool!

  5. thanks for this. He's like a young British Conor Oberst. Went and bought the full discography off Bandcamp. life-changing.