Posts Tagged ‘Peter Brewis’

Field Music return with their sixth album, Open Here. The two years since Commontime have been strange and turbulent. If you thought the world made some kind of sense, you may have questioned yourself a few times in the past two years. And that questioning, that erosion of faith – in people, in institutions, in shared experience – runs through every song on Field Music’s new album.

But there’s no gloom here. For Peter and David Brewis, playing together in their small riverside studio has been a joyful exorcism. Open Here is the last in a run of five albums made at the studio, an unprepossessing unit on a light industrial estate in Sunderland. Whilst the brothers weren’t quite tracking while the wrecking balls came, the eviction notice received in early 2017 gave the brothers a sense of urgency in the recording of Open Here. There probably won’t be many other rock records this year, or any year, which feature quite so much flute and flugelhorn (alongside the saxophones, string quartet and junk box percussion). But somehow or other, it comes together. Over thirteen years and six albums, Field Music have managed to carve a niche where all of these sounds can find a place; a place where pop music can be as voracious as it wants to be.

Taken from the upcoming album ‘Open Here’ (out 2nd February 2018) catch the band at , Nottingham, Rough Trade 7th February

Peter and David Brewis, playing together in their small riverside studio has been a joyful exorcism. “Open Here” is the last in a run of five albums made at their studio, an unprepossessing unit on a light industrial estate in Sunderland. whilst the brothers weren’t quite tracking while the wrecking balls came, the eviction notice received in early 2017 gave the brothers a sense of urgency in the recording of Open Here.

The studio became a sanctuary away from everything political and personal, a cocoon of creativity. and conversely, making the album became an alternative way to connect to people, with a wide array of musicians invited to leave their mark, notably Sarah Hayes on flute and piccolo, Liz Corney on vocals, Pete Fraser on saxophone, Simon Dennis on trumpet and flugelhorn, a Cornshed Sisters choir and the regular string quartet of Ed Cross, Jo Montgomery, Chrissie Slater and Ele Leckie. the result is a record that is bigger in scale, grander than anything they’ve done before. David explains, “where commontime felt like a distillation of all of the elements that make up Field Music, this feels like an expansion; as if we’re pushing in every direction at once to see how far we can go”.

Album opener, Time in joy, Turns Dark Times into sparkling funk, and might even have earned another acknowledgement from a sadly-departed purple superstar in happier circumstances. Count It Up’s wry critique of privilege bounces along like an upside-down material girl. checking on a message could be on the apocalyptic party playlist the morning after any number of recent voting catastrophes. Peter says the song “is about being too confident that world events will go the way you expect them to. and then getting bad news from a mobile phone”.

wrestling with politics has gone hand in hand with wrestling with parenthood. if we can’t make sense of the world for ourselves, how do we do it for our kids? share a pillow is the eye-rolling, eye-rubbing product of one too many nights playing musical beds, turning the pitter-patter of tiny feet into a bludgeoning baritone stomp. no king no princess is a barbed two-fingered salute to gender stereotypes. David again: “my little boy was born not long before we started making Commontime and my baby girl was born just before we started making Open Here. people tend to ascribe every perceived difference between them to their gender. the ‘princess’ thing is so weird to me – it’s such a passive aspiration. i wanted to write a song for my kids which says you can throw all of those expectations out of the window if you want to.”

On a few tracks, the melancholy finds a way to seep through. front of house says a too-late goodbye to a good friend gone far too soon. daylight saving wistfully laments having the time to be a couple when you’re preoccupied with being parents. and then on the final song, find a way to keep me, an imploring whisper builds to a wild, hurtling clangour, with flute and trumpet and strings diving and trilling around each other. it’s the grandest music the brothers have ever made.

 

There probably won’t be many other rock records this year, or any year, which feature quite so much flute and flugelhorn (alongside the saxophones, string quartet and junk box percussion). but somehow or other, it comes together. Over thirteen years and six albums, Field Music have managed to carve a niche where all of these sounds can find a place; a place where pop music can be as voracious as it wants to be.

Take a listen to Time in Joy, the second song from our upcoming album Open Here.

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Field Music will be live in-store at Rough Trade Nottingham, performing tracks from their new album ‘Open Here’, released 2nd February on Memphis Industries.

7.00pm Doors // 7.30pm On-stage // 8.15pm Signing // 10.00pm close.

Field Music, Peter and David Brewis, have announced their sixth album “Open Here”. The brothers are just putting the finishing touches to the record and plan on releasing via Memphis Industries on 2nd February 2018.

The two years since Commontime have been strange and turbulent. If you thought the world made some kind of sense, you may have questioned yourself a few times in the past two years. And that questioning, that erosion of faith – in people, in institutions, in shared experience – runs through every song on the new Field Music album.

The brother’s studio, on the banks of the river Wear, became a sanctuary away from everything political and personal, a cocoon of creativity. And conversely, making the album became an alternative way to connect to people, with a wide array of musicians invited to leave their mark, notably Sarah Hayes on flute and piccolo, Liz Corney on vocals, Pete Fraser on saxophone, Simon Dennis on trumpet and flugelhorn, a Cornshed Sisters choir and the regular string quartet of Ed Cross, Jo Montgomery, Chrissie Slater and Ele Leckie. The result is a record that is bigger in scale, grander than anything they’ve done before.

David and Peter Brewis took a five year break after 2011’s Plumb to work on other projects (some of which involved them both). They returned in 2016 with their best record to date, Commontime. Now they’re back almost two years to the day with Open Here, which reflects both the state of the band and the state of the world. Brexit and the U.S. election inform the lyrics, while Madonna inspired the inventive first single “Count it Up.” “Where Commontime felt like a distillation of all of the elements that make up Field Music,” says David, “this feels like an expansion; as if we’re pushing in every direction at once to see how far we can go.”

Sunderland-bred brothers Peter and David Brewis have somehow managed to become acclaimed cult artists while ploughing some very overlooked furrows; most likely because their mix of nervy prog, spindly post-punk and jazz-inflected funk is usually paired with the most robust, infectious melodies.
On their fifth album, and their first for four years, their influences are given room to breathe across a full, schizophrenic hour. At times, the rich contents are too much to take in – lead single and album opener The Noisy Days Are Over unravels over six and a half minutes, its taut funk bizarrely giving way to an eccentric, orchestrated ending straight off Van Dyke Parks’ Song Cycle. Similarly, I’m Glad mixes a 6/4 time signature with jerky guitars, analogue synths and an acoustic interlude – it hangs together in the air in a way it wouldn’t on paper.
Commontime is Field Music’s funkiest full-length yet: Don’t You Want To Know, It’s A Good Thing and Stay Awake are the slickest tracks here, combining Genesis’ dynamics with the wit of Steely Dan and Sly And The Family Stone’s syncopation. Yet, for the most part, this is awkward, nervous music, taking the exultation and liberation of funk and, like Bowie’s Station To Station, passing it through a more anxious, English filter to result in something much more interesting.


At times reminiscent of the ’80s feel of Peter Brewis’ The Week That Was side-project, Commontime’s production is uniformly excellent too, with the Brewis’ wiry guitars supplemented by blasts of brass, strings, pianos and synths. Field Music’s fifth is their most crafted and impressive yet, another milestone on their unique journey. A good thing, indeed.