YORK alt-folk group The Howl & The Hum have shared a gorgeous new track called ‘Thumbs Up’.

Described as “High And Dry” if it were written by Jeff Buckley”, the track explores toxic masculinity and tokenistic gestures. Written by singer Sam Griffiths after a personal tragedy, it’s a deeply moving piece of music with simple and pared arrangements that allow his stunning falsetto to take centre stage. With words that hit you right in the heart, it builds to a beautifully atmospheric conclusion.

Speaking of the track, he said “”Thumbs Up” is the confession that us men don’t know how to talk to other men about important sh*t. This song was written in the silence after suicides of friends, during depressive episodes, and over non-existent conversations about how we communicate our feelings: our highs, our lows, our loves and losses. It also references 80s movie icons Bruce Willis and Arnold Schwarzenegger, a brief admittance of vulnerability in the face of what we call masculinity.”

Photo by Stewart Baxter