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Blue Hours sees the much-loved folk-rock duo – made up of Andrew Davie and Kevin Jones – once again team up with producer Ian Grimble on what is one of their most personal records to date.

Speaking about the new album, Davie says: “Blue Hours is a kind of imaginary space you get into at night, a place where you process difficult things or where you try to figure everything out.”

Themes on the album include both self-reflection and mental health after both struggled with the latter in recent years. “It’s the main over-arching theme with this record,” Davie explains. The group, who have worked with mental health charity CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably) previously added: “It probably speaks to our struggles and hopefully many other people’s too. Men are not very good at talking. We’re not really taught how to – men have no idea how to talk about this stuff, certainly to each other.”

The pair describe the conceptual blue hours headspace that gives the new album its title as being “somewhere between a hotel, a mental health hospital, a bar that stays open later than anywhere else, a paradise, a dream, a nightmare and an endless sea of corridors and staircases leading you to rooms that represent memories – good, bad, happy or difficult.”

Despite the album’s challenging themes, it’s an album drenched in hope too. “We wanted this to be a celebration of music,” Jones continues. “I think that informed some of the bolder decision making on this record. At a time when music was so distant, it felt important to make an album that sounded hopeful, celebratory, ambitious and beautiful in spite of the heavy subject matter in some of the songs.” Jones adds: “It was almost like we needed to shout louder than before because we felt that there were more barriers between the audience and us. We needed something to transcend that.”


STAFF COMMENTS

Barry says: This is another beautiful outing from Bear's Den, both orchestral and tender in equal measure. These are grand, bold pieces with a brittle and fragile core, both cathartic and touching.

TRACK LISTING

Side A
New Ways
Blue Hours
Frightened Whispers
Gratitude
Shadows
Side B
All That You Are
Spiders
Selective Memories
On Your Side
All The Wrong Places

MarthaGunn

Something Good Will Happen

    ‘Something Good Will Happen’ marks another defiant chapter for MarthaGunn, who consistently prove they are worth their weight in gold through honest and conscientious song-writing, partnered with pristine pop melodies that have caught the attention of tastemakers CLASH, Independent, Dork, The Line of Best Fit, BBC Introducing Track of The Week and John Kennedy (Radio X). This is the sound of a band ever evolving their euphoric sound, where nuanced production and kaleidoscopic samples lift them into the stratosphere.

    If there’s one goal MarthaGunn want to achieve with their music, it’s connection. Whether it’s Abi giving a voice to her contemporaries via her Songwriters Circle on Instagram live, where she invites her favourite songwriters for a Q&A about their process, guests including Another Sky, Katy J Pearson, Willie J Healey, Flyte and Buzzard Buzzard Buzzard, or setting up a virtual tour in light of having shows cancelled and playing a special live set including a locally sourced cover - her and her band want to remind people that they’re not alone and that, at end of the day, we’re all human and we all have that in common.

    “I want to connect with people. The beautiful thing about songs is that you don’t have to know someone, but you can connect with them through the same song without saying anything. I want this album to be able to help people in some way, and give people courage to leave a situation they know isn’t right for them, or for the other person. To go after the person they love and to know no matter how bad things may seem, it’s just a chapter. Things always get better.”


    TRACK LISTING

    Side 1
    1. Undone
    2. Caught Up & Confused
    3. Giving In
    4. It’s Over
    5. Raising Hell

    Side 2
    1. Lost In The Moment
    2. Minute Of My Time
    3. I Had To Let Go
    4. Holding The Fire
    5. See You Again
    6. The Nights Are Long 

    Bear's Den + Paul Frith

    Fragments

      Bear's Den are beloved by their fans for the way their songs have woven themselves into the fabric of some of the most bittersweet chapters of their lives. Last April the band released their 3rd album ‘So that you might hear me’ which debuted at no. 13 in the UK charts, no. 4 in Belgium, and top 40 in Germany.

      Fragments is a collaboration album between Bear's Den and award winning composer Paul Frith, stemming from some live shows in 2018. Fragments sees Paul Frith rework and arrange a number of songs from the Bear’s Den catalogue with an orchestra; from adding orchestral flourishes to the originals to completely pulling apart and reimagining tracks - hence “Fragments”. 


      TRACK LISTING

      Side 1
      1. Fuel On The Fire – Fragments
      2. Auld Wives – Fragments
      3. Can’t You Hear It In The Silence
      4. Crow – Fragments
      5. As The Clouds Began To Part
      6. Isaac – Fragments

      Side 2
      1. Fireworks Flashing
      2. When You Break – Fragments
      3. Broken Parable – Fragments
      4. Breaker / Keeper – Fragments
      5. Lightning Trying To Put Out A Spark
      6. Napoleon – Fragments 

      “Amir” was produced by PJ Maertens and Jo Francken, and recorded at Maertens’ house in Belgium and at Audiworkx Studios in Holland. Of Belgian, Egyptian and Lebanese heritage the 21-year-old musician has written and shaped an album of startling, visceral, sit-up-and-listen power. “Amir” features a handful of tracks from his debut EP, “Habibi” including "Indigo Night" which features Radiohead’s Colin Greenwood on bass guitar. Although the majority of the playing heard on “Amir” is Tamino himself, he is joined by a collective of Arabic musicians based in Brussels called Nagham Zikrayat.

      The Firka (orchestra) is predominantly made up of professional musicians from the Middle East, most of which have refugee status having predominantly fled from Iraq and Syria. Over the course of “Amir”, Tamino captures a range of emotions from romance to desolation, and almost everything in between. It’s mood music, painted in a number of different shades. Tamino: 'Some of the songs on “Amir” are more on the romantic side, whilst others are more on the apathetic side. In my own life, I can look at the world and at life in both ways depending on my state of being. The conflict creates an imbalance. “Amir” is about balance'

      'A tantalising introduction to a fierce new talent' - Sunday Times Culture

      'An astonishing vocal range...Breath-taking' - The Independent. 


      TRACK LISTING

      Habibi
      Sun May Shine
      Tummy
      Chambers
      So It Goes
      Indigo Night
      Cigar
      Each Time
      Verses
      W.o.t.h
      Intervals
      Persephone

      The Tower Recordings

      The Galaxies’ Incredibly Sensual Transmission..

        Almost a precursor and defiantely a reference point to the whole 'new weird folk' scene that is in abundance in the USA right now, TTR members include PG Six, Samara Lubelski, Tim Barnes, Dean Roberts, Andre Vida, Helen Rush, Matt Valentine...so, very much a sum of some very special parts. If you like Devendra, Six Organs Of Admittance, Espers, Vetiver etc then you need this.


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