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Broads – Field Theory (Humm Recordings 19 February 2018)

11 Nov

Norfolk-based electronic outfit Broads announce new album, Present first single ‘Climbs’

British electronic duo Broads have announced that they’ll be releasing their new album Field Theory’ in the new year.  But for now, they present the first single from that 11-track album, called  ‘Climbs’, which features mesmerizing vocals from Milly Hirst, who also co-wrote this track with band members James Ferguson and Mark Jennings.
Mainstays of the Norwich music scene, Broads deliver a variety of music – always delicious – ranging from synth-pop bliss to a hybrid fusion of genres straddling the divide between ambient drone, post-rock and shoegaze. Broads takes a fascinating approach with this album, tastefully showcasing completely different sides of their musical spectrum.

‘Climbs’ recalls Melody’s Echo Chamber and Broadcast, while ‘The Lecht’ brings to mind both Mogwai and Boards of Canada. ‘Mixed Ability Sequencing’ most strongly aligns with My Bloody Valentineand Slowdive, leaving you hanging with less than minute of pure guitar reverie, while ‘Habitats’ brings the duo delightfully close to New Orderterritory.
After several releases as a solo artist, James Ferguson says Broads’ dynamics started to change with the release of the ‘Hellas’ LP (Jan 2016), undergoing a kind of sonic breakthrough with Mark now joining James for live shows and co-writing one of its tracks ‘Soft Homo’ – the first time Broads had really arrived at their now-signature sound, marrying droning, lo-fi synths and slow build through repetition with straightforward electronics.

Broads started to perform more around Norwich and occasionally in Cambridge, Suffolk and London. By the time Broads released their split album ‘Local Closures’ with Mark’s other project EPIA, they were opening for Mercury Rev at the Norwich Arts Centre, followed soon after by Broads’ third album ‘Everything is Spinning, Nobody Is Actually In Charge’ (December 2016) with Mark and James once again co-writing.

Some very cool developments were happening for the duo, including work on a live soundtrack for the British Film Institute – composing for a sequence of archive film footage of rural/agricultural Norfolk scenes, and performing live in beautiful venues across the region – as well as a sold-out gig at the NAC with Plaid.

“Finding the balance between space and rich texture is something we’re really interested in, and hopefully something we’ve started to achieve on Field Theory,” explains James Ferguson. “The sound of the album is very much influenced by the recording environments and our geographical context as a whole – Norwich is kind of isolated, surrounded by expansive, flat landscapes and big skies.”

“For us, it’s a really big deal – our first record written as a 2-piece, and the first time we’ve had any sort of budget to spend,” says Mark Jennings. “We got support from Arts Council England to make everything happen and that has given us the chance to really take time over our writing, programming, editing and recording, and get some amazing people involved with making the record – especially Owen Turner (Magoo) who recorded quite a lot of it and mixed the whole thing.”

Apart from the geographic factor, Broads took inspiration from left field on this album – from road biking in the Scottish Highlands to news of George Romero’s death, Purity Ring’s second album and Unwound’s ‘New Plastic Ideas’, as well as lot of old sci-fi and horror movies.

Broads will release their ‘Field Theory’ album on February 16 with their album release party scheduled for February 15 at the Norwich Arts Centre.  For now, the first single ‘Climbs’ is available for download and the album can be pre-ordered via Bandcamp.
TRACK LIST
01. Toze
02. Climbs
03. Habitats
04. Lund
05. Us and the Buzzing
06. Romero
07. Let Me Take It From Here
08. Tiamat
09. Mixed Ability Sequencing
10. The Lecht
11. Built Calypso
CREDITS

Music by Broads (James Ferguson/Mark Jennings)

Lyrics on ‘Climbs’ by James Ferguson and Milly Hirst

Performed by James Ferguson and Mark Jennings, with help from Milly Hirst (vocals), Connie Chatwin (violin), Fifi Homan (cello), Joe Bear (drums), Stacy Gow (drums), Owen Turner (bass, horns) & FMSAO (electronics)

Produced by Broads & Owen Turner

Artwork by Paul Escott

Live Photos by Matt Tullett

Keep up with Broads 

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Posted by on November 11, 2017 in Electronic

 

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