Arts & Entertainment

ARTIST REVIEW: The Last Dinner Party and their ‘Prelude to Ecstasy’

The all-woman indie rock band has risen to fame for encapsulating indulgence through their baroque aesthetic and hyper-femme style. 

These past few months have supplied us with a treasure trove of new artists and genres. New music seems to be dropping back-to-back, and I find myself discovering new artists every day. I have decided to dedicate this week’s issue to another group of rising stars that have been especially popular here in the Pacific Northwest (PNW): The Last Dinner Party.  

The Last Dinner Party is an all-femme, British indie rock band from London. The group consists of five members: Abigail Morris on lead vocals, Emily Roberts on lead guitar, mandolin and flute; Georgia Davies on bass, Lizzie Mayland on vocals and guitar; and Aurora Nishevci on vocals and keyboard.  

Though not much is known about the members’ personal lives, there has been some brief history shared by the members during interviews. Davies, Morris and Mayland met in 2020 as they all frequented a local live music venue. They realized their mutual love for music and decided to create a band together after a few meetings discussing their passion and visions for their music careers.  

During an interview, this trio disclosed that the band’s original name was simply “The Dinner Party,” as they described the visuals they wished to encompass through their stylistic appearances and their music: hosting a debauched dinner party and celebrating together in a “hedonistic banquet.” The band has since carried on this theme of indulgence and lust for life through their entire identity.  

A few months after the trio’s initial meeting, a mutual friend recommended skilled guitarist Emily Roberts as a potential band member. She was naturally integrated into the band. Shortly after, the band found Aurora Nishevci for the keyboards. And with that, the band was finally complete.  

Because of the pandemic, the band found themselves having a hard time meeting to practice, and were only able to have their first live performance together in 2022, at The George in London. They signed a contract in 2022 with management group Q Prime, and then spent an extra year afterwards honing their skills, sound and artistic identity. They played most of their performances in the live circuit in London, gaining support through pure word of mouth.  

This hard work eventually paid off and in July, the band found themselves as a supporting act for the Rolling Stones in Hyde Park. This was the gateway to their continued success and shortly after, they became the supporting act for BENEE during her world tour.  

2023 brought forth their first record label sponsor, and they signed a contract with Island records. The band also took the opportunity to formally change their name to The Last Dinner Party. They released their debut single, “Nothing Matters,” almost immediately after signing. This song was also a collaboration with famous songwriter and producer James Ford, who has worked with such big names in alternative music such as Depeche Mode, Arctic Monkeys and Florence and the Machine.  

The single track release brought extreme traction for the band. By the summer of 2023, the band continued on to support Hozier on his worldwide tour and played in festivals around the UK.  They later arrived back home to perform “Nothing Matters” live through the BBC Radio 6 Music show.  

“Prelude to Ecstasy,” the band’s debut album, was dropped on February 2 of this year. The band is currently getting praise from music and fashion enthusiasts, as well as many other creative souls that appreciate the band’s beautiful art direction.  

The groups hyper-femme, baroque-inspired aesthetic, musical creativity and their melodious vocals are their most distinguishable traits. I’d be confident enough to say that these are traits that will continue to distinguish them from the oversaturated indie-rock genre nowadays.  

After listening to the album in its entirety, I have to say that it is quite enjoyable. I like how other songs in the album, as opposed to “Nothing Matters,” have a more prominent rock sound which I did not expect. “Lady of Mercy” is a perfect example of this, combining both religious imagery with cutting guitar riffs and lustful lyrics.  

I’m also quite a sucker for unique sounding vocalists, and Abigail has an absolutely beautiful voice that is reminiscent of one of my favorite vocalists, Marina Diamandis. The vocal similarity is enough that fans have also been referring to Abigail as a young Marina. It has an elegant feel to it during her vibratos, but jabs with a subtle edge right after.  

If this is the first time you’ve heard of The Last Dinner Party, I guarantee that after listening to the entirety of “Prelude to Ecstasy,” you’ll be wishing you were sipping on wine, eating grapes and draped in silk by the end of it.  

The Last Dinner Party’s entire discography is currently out on all music streaming platforms.  

The Last Dinner Party band posing with a sword to promote their second single “Sinner”. Photo by @thelastdinnerparty via Instagram.

All members of The Last Dinner Party band taking part in an artistic photo shoot inspired by their baroque aesthetic. Photo by @thelastdinnerparty via Instagram.