First Signs of Love No 228 The Lonely Together

The Lonely Together are our latest First Signs of Love featured artist. This feature is about the moment you find a new band to love, and you can’t get enough! Discover more from our archive.

Introducing The Lonely Together

The Lonely Together are an award-nominated alternative rock band from Scotland, led by the talented Mike Baillie. Their music is rooted in alluring melancholy and an abundance of hope. The perfect showcase for his distinct voice, skilful songwriting, and deft, heartfelt guitar playing.

Fans of artists like Blackchords, Snow Patrol, I Am Kloot, Frightened Rabbit and Richard Hawley should find something to love here.

Everything Viewed Backwards Through The Rearviewmirror

The debut album ‘Everything Viewed Backwards Through The Rearviewmirror,’ was released on July 9, 2021 and was prominently nominated for Scottish Album of the Year, that’s some start! The album featured Mike Baillie (lead vocals/guitar), Gemma Thurston (vocals), Matthew Casey (bass), and David Calder (drums).

“This is an album that immediately feels epic and urgent in the best possible way.”

‘Everything Viewed Backwards Through The Rearviewmirror,’ was recorded at the legendary CaVa Sound in Glasgow, and produced by Baillie and Geoff Allan. (Arab Strap, Hue & Cry).

If like us you missed this album the first time around, you are in for a real treat. This is a record that immediately feels epic and urgent in the best possible way. It’s easy to see why singles including ‘Congregation’ ‘Shot’s Fired’ and “Keep A Secret’ found their way onto BBC 6 Music.

Live In The Living Room

Between the release of ‘Everything Viewed Backwards Through The Rearviewmirror’ and the much anticipated sophomore record ‘Endless Sunset Oblivion’ the Pandemic raged. Feeling the weight of the situation, Mike began piecing together the music for what he instantly knew was the biggest and most existentially poignant record he had ever created. But a ‘lockdown album’, it was not…

During this time Mike Baillie also established his long-running ‘LIVE: In The Living Room’ livestream concert series. Baillie would perform to a dedicated, loyal following of ‘Loners’, He would go on to perform over 40 shows, comprised of setlists between 4-5+ hours each time.

Across these shows, Mike would perform 500-600 different songs. Combining cover song requests, dedications and songs that had shaped his musical trajectory, over the years.

All through this process, he continued writing, demo-ing and testing out new material, presenting new works and ideas at each Sunday live session.

Endless Sunset Oblivion

Written across four days, the title track, Endless Sunset Oblivion was created in the studio room of his home, in Edinburgh, in April 2020 and opened the floodgates for some of the most ambitious and personal songs Baillie has penned to date.

As soon as lockdown lifted, Mike called up his old friend, Rod Jones of seminal Edinburgh band, Idlewild and booked into his studio to begin work on the second The Lonely Together record.

“Endless Sunset Oblivion is an album that literally sparkles, it’s hard not to listen to this album and dream.”

Self-released via his imprint Rearviewmirror Records, the album was produced by Rod Jones and Baillie, mixed by Rod Jones, mastered by Ed Woods, and featured Mike Baillie (lead vocals/guitar), alongside Jonny Scott (Chvrches, The Kills) and Scott Kelman (The Little Kicks) on drums. It quietly became the album he had always dreamed of making.

As Mike puts it…

“They say that, in the moment before you die, your life flashes before your eyes… In that sense, Endless Sunset Oblivion is that moment and the rest of the songs on the record are snapshots of life – memories, regrets, heartbreaks, grief, joy – the full spectrum…”

There is a lot to admire about this beautiful record. The title track sets an upbeat optimistic tone which continues across ‘Don’t Ask Don’t Get’ and ‘Talk About Anything’.

The album settles into a more melancholy and reflective space with ‘Let Down’, the stunning ‘Los Angeles’ and ‘Take It Easy On Me’.

The energy returns with the anthemic ‘We Could Be Anywhere’ which feels like the Scottish twin of Springsteen’s Born To Run, it’s glorious.

The album closes out with the reflective ‘Cycle of Sadness’ and the intimate ‘This Is Just A Moment’ (It Will Pass).

The Edinburgh Fringe Festival Show

Baillie’s vision for this project didn’t end there, as it evolved into an original novel and an Edinburgh Festival Fringe show, Endless Sunset Oblivion: A Story On The State Of The World.

Throughout a full-festival run (24 shows) at The Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Baillie explored if one song could save the world. ‘Endless Sunset Oblivion’ told the story of Reuben – a young songwriter attempting to combat the accelerated problems the world is facing.

Through a compelling blend of live music and life-affirming, often humorous, storytelling, Baillie wove an enchanting tale for the modern age.

Baillie released ‘Endless Sunset Oblivion’ on August 4, 2023. The album is now out to stream or buy on vinyl via his own Rearviewmirror Records. Go immerse yourself in this fascinating album.

Where have you been?

The real joy of running a music blog are these true moments of discovery. It’s like being the first person to walk on a beach where the sand is perfect, it’s a wonderful feeling. But occasionally this joy is tempered with a feeling of frustration. How on earth can I only just be hearing this band?

Why are The Lonely Together, not a household name, playing on every major festival bill? I even had to check they weren’t. In a world where over 100,000 tracks are added to Spotify every day, many independent artists sadly get lost in the shuffle. The Lonely Together are a prime example of this. The good news, this can all change. What if we all just listened and told one other person about The Lonely Together?

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Words Mark Knight