As PETSEMATARY release their shimmering new single ‘Get Away With It’ today via Beth Shalom Records, we caught up with Gaby-Elise Monaghan to talk capybaras, Jeff Buckley and Beam Me Up Softboi.

Having started out as Monaghan’s solo project, PETSEMATARY has since expanded to include longtime collaborators Luke Allmond, Jack Kendrew and Casper Miles. A blissful, tender cut, ‘Get Away With It’ sees the Oxford-based four-piece merge dreamy, resplendent melodies with driving basslines and brooding, ethereal pop intonations as Monaghan’s intimate and powerfully emotive vocals soar atop with ethereal clarity.

Of the track, the band express “The song is about mental health and how it affects the people around you, friends, family, partners. It’s about feeling shame and worrying about how your mental health affects others, and trying to find a balance of self acceptance of who you are whilst also taking into account that it might hurt others along the way. It’s inspired by my close friends and family especially, and how we’ve learnt that it’s alright to feel a little messed up.”

Get to know PETSEMATARY In Short…

Three words to describe our music…
Dark dreamy oversharing

Last photo on your phone…

My mum, my auntie and I have a Whatsapp group called “Capybaras to Cure COVID” which. My social media is constant anxiety-inducing pandemic stuff and it’s been pretty overwhelming for my mental health, so I thought it’d be a good idea to just have a group chat that’s solely dedicated to light-hearted stuff. It’s a moment of respite from the chaos in the form of extreme capybaraposting.

Favourite instagram account…
Beam Me Up Softboi for reminding me how hilarious and awful guys in their 20s can be. Also serves as a direct attack on my love life and taste in men and I’m completely fine with that.

The best venue I’ve played…
Oslo Hackney for Rock Against Violence was a great one for us. It’s such a beautiful venue and space, but not too big that it was intimidating. We love the smaller venues too, especially the Library in Oxford. It’s this tiny 30 cap basement room (which I also happen to bartend at). It’s sweaty and smelly and intimate and just great.

Earliest song you remember…
I remember singing How You Remind Me by Nickleback in my kitchen with my mum when I was four or five. I will argue ’til I draw my last breath that it is in fact, a banger.

The thing I most love to cook is…
Frozen chips and nuggets? I’m not a massive cook…it’s the perfect depression snack.

My Favourite word…
“Absolutely.” It absolutely makes everything sound more intense.

A book I love…
Circe by Madeline Miller is my favourite book at the moment. It’s a story about the witch Circe from Greek mythology. I did a degree in Ancient History so I’m pretty obsessed with this stuff, and it’s really cool to read about mythological characters from a female perspective.I love reading fantasy but it can in general feel pretty male dominated, so it’s really cool to read a book that embraces the magic, anger and desire of a woman. Circe is seen as a sort of femme-fatale/seductress type figure in mythology. All of those old tropes about women, even the idea of “witches” are constructed from the fear of female power, so it’s really empowering and cool to me to read about a character that reclaims those stereotypes.

Things that cheer me up…
Horror movies, crying to my friends on Facetime. Also pictures of fruit bats/raccoons/rodents of all kinds.

If I could play a gig anywhere it would be…
At this point, anywhere! I’m really missing playing live at the moment. I think lockdown has made me realise how much of my personality and self-expression is tied to performing, so it feels pretty empty that we can’t do that at the moment. Once it’s safe to play again, we’d love to tour Europe at some point. Prague is an especially beautiful city to me. The buildings and cityscape are so dark and spooky, and I’d love to play there one day.

I think you should listen to… 
Emma Ruth Rundle and Anna Calvi. Emma is one of my favourite guitarists of all time and has massively influenced how I play guitar, especially with different tunings and pedals. Anna Calvi’s album ‘Hunter’ was recommended to me by a friend and it’s become a massive source of inspiration to me. They’re absolutely incredible women in music and their artistry and attitudes inspire me daily.

If I could see anyone play live it would be…
Jeff Buckley. He’s been a huge influence on me since I was in my early teens, and its gutting that I’ll never be able to him him play live. His voice and lyrics are really evocative and powerful to me. His voice sounds like love and loss and hope and anger and I think it would be magical to watch.

‘Get Away With It’ is out now on Beth Shalom Records.