“Cocoon,” the eagerly awaited second full-length album by Give Up To Failure, a remarkable shoegaze band from Wroclaw, Poland, delves into themes of love, depression, self-destruction, insomnia, crying for help, trying to find oneself, and personal growth. Just released by the esteemed Polish independent label, Requiem Records, on February 20, 2023, the album is a departure from their previous release, “Burden,” as “Cocoon” presents a unique blend of shoegaze, post-rock, and post-metal, with elements of post-punk, ambient, and dream pop that creates a more organic and cohesive sound.
The ten songs featured in this album delve into the complexities of love, self-reflection, and personal development, as the band explores a diverse range of emotions, from despair to hopefulness. “Cocoon” presents a powerful sonic journey that will leave the listener feeling uplifted and transformed.
In order to provide an immersive experience for their fans, Give Up To Failure has also provided a track-by-track commentary, which provides a deeper insight into the creative process behind each song. With “Cocoon,” the band has showcased their artistic versatility and evolved their sound to new heights, making it a must-listen for anyone who appreciates innovative and thought-provoking music.
Album artwork by Rafał Wekiera.
“Cocoon” track by track commentary, by Give Up To Failure
1. CHIMERIC HEAD
MARK: It can be a song that took us the most time before we put it together. I remember that first, during a writing session at my house with Krzysiek and Dominik, an outro was created and for a long time we did not know what to do with it. The final composition really consists of three separate ideas.
MICHAL: The track with which we open the album and have opened our concerts. I like its feeling and the heavy, slow ending.
MARK: I came up with riff to that song and I felt like there’s something more but couldn’t really figure it out for quiet some time. Originally that song had an acoustic outro but while I was messing around with some notes that outro solo appered and that big shoegaze part along to it. Lyrically it tells about not being capable to love and open to other person because of demons in your head. You’re really struggling but it feels like hope is slowly fading so you’re crying out for help.
MICHAL: The heaviest track on the album. As a metal fan, it’s a pleasure to play this song live. The leading riff invented by the guys is great. Wildness, energy and that lyrical ending. One of my favorite tracks on the album.
3. WIDE AWAKE
MARK: This one tells about insomnia I was struggling with about a month while writing the album. The original version of the song sounded very pop and needed some rewriting to match the sound and atmosphere of the album.
MICHAŁ: An atypical composition for us. A very radio-friendly track. Interestingly, the drum parts were largely rewritten during the studio visit.
MARK: Honestly “Damages” came the longest way to its final state. It was rewritten from the song we released, I believe, in 2019. I’m so happy we decided to rescue this idea that we fucked up before. Song tells about self-destruction.
MICHAŁ: This is the track that required a bit more work from me and was a kind of curse. However, I believe that ultimately it was worth making friends with the drum part created by Mark because the final effect is really good.
MARK: It started with riff that Krzysiek sent to me. It inspired me to wrote the part that, some time later, turned out to be the heavy outro and I got stuck. Eventually that Krzysiek’s riff is not the leading part of the song but it’s hidden somewhere there to apprecite how important is was.
6. THE HUSK
MARK: Dominik’s idea. When he showed it to me it sounded like a complete song already. Lyrics just bursted from me like in a few minutes.
MICHAŁ: At first, I had a problem with this track – it’s very slow and percussively seemed quite monotonous. However, over time it turned out that sometimes less is more!
MARK: I was always obsessed with minimal, one-minute tracks on albums. This one was supposed to be one of these but it turned out into full song. I had this poem written for quite some time and it matched perfectly. I think I was also listening a lot of Manchester Orchestra song called “Sleeper 1972”.
8. SLOW COLLAPSE
MARK: This was the first fully written song for that album. Dominik bought new bass amp and that opening riff was the first thing that bumped in his hands.
MICHAŁ: My favorite track from the album. I remember when Mark played me the initial demo – it immediately grabbed my heart! I liked the anxiety of the keyboard playing and the great tension-building. Playing this song live is always a relaxation and a kind of cleansing for me – I can leave all my bad emotions on the stage.
MARK: It tells about being lost, trying to figure out who you are and burying the piece of your rotten soul and reborn. Album title “Cocoon” was meant to be associated with shelter, peaceful, warm place. On the other hand, we wanted it to be peculiar equivalent of a certain transformation, internal work on yourself, striving to be a better person. After all, a cocoon carries a new life within it.
And again it’s thing from the bottow of a drawer – old riffs and old solos – around 2017 or older. Sometimes music just has to wait until you become mature enough to finish it.
10. SUICIDE LETTER TO MYSELF
MARK: Really personal song. It might be the key to understand the whole album. Lyrics are from the poem I wrote long time ago.