British Sea Power Returns with ‘Machineries of Joy’
One of the many great things about British Sea Power is that we can always count on them to be unabashedly clever. They’re totally mad, but also quite charming. And for well over a decade now, the Brighton, England indie rock collective has chortled on about Fyodor Dostoyevsky (“Apologies to Insect Life”), an ice shelf (“Oh Larsen B”), Kevlar and cherrywood (“No Lucifer”) and wishing that protesting was sexy on a Saturday night (“Who’s In Control”), just to name a few things. Don’t expect anything else from their forthcoming LP, Machineries of Joy –- their follow-up to 2011’s Valhalla Dancehall –- either.
“We’d like to think the album is warm and restorative,” said singer/guitarist Scott “Yan” Wilkinson on their official site. “Various things are touched on in the words – Franciscan monks, ketamine, French female bodybuilders turned erotic movie stars. The world often seems a mad, hysterical place at the moment. You can’t really be oblivious to that, but we’d like the record to be an antidote – a nice game of cards in pleasant company.”
And how about that album title? Well, it’s another tip of the hat to Ray Bradbury, whose 1964 collection of short stories shares the same name. British Sea Power adore the late American sci-fi/fantasy author, as “Something Wicked” from their epic 2003 debut album, The Decline of British Sea Power, riffs on his 1962 novel, Something Wicked This Way Comes. “Georgie Ray,” too, pays tribute to both he and George Orwell.
The 10-song set drops on this side of the pond on April 2 in digital format via Rough Trade, with the physical format following a week later. Recently, the band shared the album title track as its first single. A magnificent stunner, really, with Martin Noble’s classic guitars and Yan’s wispy vocals which conjure up the idea that “we are a vision of extraordinary contorsion/an athletic form of home distortion.” Extraordinary to say the least.
For an additional sneak peek of what’s to come, the searing guitar-driven instrumental “Monsters of Sunderland” and “K Hole” have hit the web. The latter tune has been a regular part of their sets during their Krakenhaus club nights during the last few months.