Desperate Journalist

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Desperate Journalist
Desperate Journalist performing at Indietracks 2015. Rob Hardy (left), Jo Bevan (right)
Desperate Journalist performing at Indietracks 2015. Rob Hardy (left), Jo Bevan (right)
Background information
OriginLondon, England
GenresPost-punk revival, indie rock
Years active2012–present
LabelsFierce Panda
MembersJo Bevan
Simon Drowner
Rob Hardy
Caroline Helbert

Desperate Journalist are an English, London-based post-punk band, formed in 2012. They released their debut album, the self-titled Desperate Journalist, in 2014, on Fierce Panda Records. A second album, Grow Up, was released in March 2017.[3] The band's third album, In Search of the Miraculous, was released in February 2019.[4] A fourth album, Maximum Sorrow!, was released on 2 July 2021


The band was formed in North London in 2012, by Jo Bevan (vocals), Rob Hardy (guitar), Simon Drowner (bass) and Caroline Helbert (drums). Hardy and Drowner had previously played together in Birmingham-based band The Drowners;[2] Drowner had then later played bass in Bevan's previous band If....[1] Helbert joined the band as drummer, having "never really played before".[5] They wrote their first song, "Kitten", at their first rehearsal.[6][7] The band's name derives from The Cure rarity, "Desperate Journalist in Ongoing Meaningful Review Situation".[8][9]

The band played their first gig in February 2013 at the Silver Bullet in Finsbury Park. After self-releasing debut EP Cristina they were quickly signed by Fierce Panda, who released "Organ" and "Happening" as singles, leading to their debut album, Desperate Journalist, in November 2014, which was recorded at Dean Street Studios with Keith TOTP.[10][11][12][13]

The Quietus, reviewing their debut album, described them as "beautiful and spellbinding";[8] Drowned in Sound said that they had "effortless grace" and praised Bevan's vocals.[14] The band toured the United Kingdom to support the release of the album, including an appearance at Whitby.[13]

In 2015 the band played indietracks, headlined the 100 Club, and released a new EP, Good Luck.[15] In 2016, they toured Europe in the spring, and supported Chameleons Vox on a UK tour in August, as well as recording a second album.[16][7]

The second album, Grow Up, was released in March 2017, backed by a headline tour of the UK and Germany, including a date at the Scala. The first single, "Hollow", was released in October 2016, with an official music video following in November.[17] It was reviewed well by Stereogum, and was picked out as Song of the Day by KEXP.[18][3][19] The second single, "Resolution", about New Year's Eve parties, was released on 1 January 2017 and has been playlisted by BBC Radio 6 Music. A music video was released on 27 January.[20][21][22][23] A third single, "Be Kind", was released in March 2017, two weeks before the album. It was playlisted by Virgin Radio UK.[24] The fourth and final single, "Why Are You So Boring?", a 'protest song about tossers' was released in June 2017.[25] The band toured throughout 2017 making summer festival appearances at Wave-Gotik-Treffen, Tramlines, and Benicàssim, and supporting the Slow Readers Club on tour in November.

The band released a new single, "It Gets Better" in January 2018, from forthcoming EP You Get Used To It, whose release coincided with a German tour in April 2018.[26] In November 2018 the band released "Cedars", the first single of a third album, In Search of the Miraculous, for release in February 2019. From November 2018 they are joined by Charley Stone as a live guitarist. On 2 April 2021 Desperate Journalist released "Fear" and announced their 4th studio album, Maximum Sorrow!, due on 2 July 2021.[27][28]


  • Jo Bevan – vocals
  • Simon Drowner – bass guitar
  • Rob Hardy – guitar
  • Caroline Helbert  – drums
Live members
  • Charley Stone – guitar (2018–)



Singles and EPs[edit]

  • Cristina EP [Cristina/Mistakes/Kitten/Wait] (June 2013)[29]
  • "Organ" [CDs b/w "Distance"] (November 2013)[30]
  • "Happening" [CDS b/w "Vengeance"] (May 2014)[31]
  • "Hesitate" [CDs b/w "Happening (Medium Wave remix)"/"The Fire"] (June 2015)[32]
  • Good Luck EP [Good Luck/Leave Home/A Phase/Paint Something/Perfect Health] (October 2015)[33]
  • "Hollow" [CDs b/w "Hollow (Medium Wave remix)"] (October 2016)[18]
  • "Resolution" [CDs b/w "Bruce"] (January 2017)[20]
  • "Be Kind" (March 2017)[24]
  • "Why Are You So Boring" [CDs b/w ""Be Kind" and "Your Genius" ( acoustic sessions)] (June 2017)[25]
  • "It Gets Better" (January 2018)
  • You Get Used To It EP [Incandescent/It Gets Better/Nothing Happens/About You/The Bomb] (April 2018)
  • "Cedars" (November 2018)


  1. ^ a b "We are If..." Soundcloud. Retrieved 28 October 2016.
  2. ^ a b "The Drowners UK". Soundcloud. Retrieved 28 October 2016.
  3. ^ a b c "Exclusive: Desperate Journalist unveil sinister 'Hollow' clip, announce new album 'Grow Up'". Nothing But Hope and Passion. 15 November 2016. Retrieved 17 November 2016.
  4. ^ Eede, Christian (22 February 2019). "New Desperate Journalist Album". The Quietus. Retrieved 8 June 2019.
  5. ^ Kail, Gary. "Adults Only". The Skinny North. No. March/April 2017. Retrieved 2 March 2017.
  6. ^ Luzzo, Fabrizio (24 February 2017). "Desperate Journalist". Last Day Deaf.
  7. ^ a b Auton, James (23 February 2017). "Desperate Journalist – interview". Louder than War. Retrieved 26 February 2017.
  8. ^ a b Allen, Jeremy (21 January 2015). "Desperate Journalist: Desperate Journalist". The Quietus. Retrieved 26 April 2016.
  9. ^ Garland, Emma (31 October 2014). "The Cure's "Desperate Journalist" Is The Perfect Diss That Nobody Heard". Vice. Retrieved 12 December 2016.
  10. ^ "About Desperate Journalist". Facebook. Retrieved 26 April 2016.
  11. ^ "Indietracks interview #17: Desperate Journalist". indietracks. 16 July 2015. Retrieved 19 December 2016.
  12. ^ "A chat with Desperate Journalist". And So She Things. 17 October 2013. Retrieved 19 December 2016.
  13. ^ a b "Desperate Journalist Panic On!". Fierce Panda. 3 January 2015. Retrieved 19 December 2016.
  14. ^ Fenwick, Tom (22 January 2015). "Desperate Journalist: Desperate Journalist". Drowned in Sound. Archived from the original on 8 August 2016. Retrieved 26 April 2016.
  15. ^ Gibsone, Harriet (3 November 2014). "The playlist: indie – Ariel Pink, Panda Bear and the Gallaghers". The Guardian. Retrieved 26 April 2016.
  16. ^ "Desperate Journalist 'leave Home' Again..." Fierce Panda. 16 March 2016.
  17. ^ "Desperate Journalist - Hollow (Official Video)". Desperate Journalist. 17 November 2016. Retrieved 27 January 2017.
  18. ^ a b DeVille, Chris (25 October 2016). "Desperate Journalist – "Hollow"". Stereogum. Retrieved 28 October 2016.
  19. ^ Howland, Matthew (10 January 2017). "Song of the Day: Desperate Journalist – Hollow". Retrieved 11 January 2017.
  20. ^ a b "NING 112". The Ning Standard. Fierce Panda. 14 December 2016. Retrieved 18 December 2016.
  21. ^ "Premiere: Desperate Journalist reveal new track Resolution". Louder Than War. 1 January 2017. Retrieved 2 January 2017.
  22. ^ BBC Radio 6 Music [@BBC6Music] (17 January 2017). "New to the playlist - tracks from @boniver @TheRyanAdams @theflaminglips @petedoherty @DespJournalist and more" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  23. ^ Clarke, Patrick (27 January 2017). "WATCH: New Desperate Journalist Vid". The Quietus. Retrieved 27 January 2017.
  24. ^ a b Johnson, Laura (10 March 2017). "Desperate Journalist Stream New Single Be Kind". Retrieved 11 March 2017.
  25. ^ a b "DESPERATE JOURNALIST RELEASE NEW SINGLE ON JUNE 2ND". Fierce Panda. 21 May 2017. Retrieved 24 May 2017.
  26. ^ "-It Gets Better For Desperate Journalist!". 4 January 2018. used. Retrieved 14 February 2018.
  27. ^ a b Eade, Christian (1 October 2018). "LISTEN: New Desperate Journalist". Retrieved 6 November 2018.
  28. ^ @DespJournalist (26 November 2018). "If you came to see us supporting @marionthegroup on Saturday, you'll already know we were joined by our friend and **new live guitarist** @charleston51 . She'll be playing on all forthcoming dates, helping us sound bigger and better. Welcome Charley!" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  29. ^ "Bandcamp: Cristina EP". Retrieved 26 April 2016.
  30. ^ "Bandcamp: Organ". Retrieved 26 April 2016.
  31. ^ "Bandcamp: Happening". Retrieved 26 April 2016.
  32. ^ "Bandcamp: Hesitate". Retrieved 26 April 2016.
  33. ^ "Desperate Journalist - Good Luck". Retrieved 4 March 2020.