17 Songs, 39 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Britain’s These New Puritans work in a groove, filling it with buzzing, clanging guitar, vibrating bass, and shouted vocals, relying on repetition and momentum to build to a suitable climax. Unlike The Fall, where Mark E. Smith is known for unpredictability and thorny curveballs, TNP’s songs stay the course, arriving at their final destination with few real surprises. That works too, as tracks like “Elvis” and “Colours” simply steamroll the listener into submission with relentless bass and drums that churn and chug, singer Jack Barnett barking vocals like a drill sergeant. The band also employs tape loops and samplers, adding an electro-garage foundation to many tracks:  “Numerology” is cleaner, bristling with nervous energy and occasional gurgles of digital tickles, and “£4” is a celebration of looped noise and rhythm. “Navigate/Colours” borrows from their skittish “Navigate Navigate” 12”, and flows and swoops gracefully before succumbing to a powerful loop in the last minute, while “Doppelganger” is a soothing, ambient ride.  “En Papier” is a nod, one must assume, to Colin Newman and the fantastic work of Wire, a band you should immediately seek out if you don’t know them already.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Britain’s These New Puritans work in a groove, filling it with buzzing, clanging guitar, vibrating bass, and shouted vocals, relying on repetition and momentum to build to a suitable climax. Unlike The Fall, where Mark E. Smith is known for unpredictability and thorny curveballs, TNP’s songs stay the course, arriving at their final destination with few real surprises. That works too, as tracks like “Elvis” and “Colours” simply steamroll the listener into submission with relentless bass and drums that churn and chug, singer Jack Barnett barking vocals like a drill sergeant. The band also employs tape loops and samplers, adding an electro-garage foundation to many tracks:  “Numerology” is cleaner, bristling with nervous energy and occasional gurgles of digital tickles, and “£4” is a celebration of looped noise and rhythm. “Navigate/Colours” borrows from their skittish “Navigate Navigate” 12”, and flows and swoops gracefully before succumbing to a powerful loop in the last minute, while “Doppelganger” is a soothing, ambient ride.  “En Papier” is a nod, one must assume, to Colin Newman and the fantastic work of Wire, a band you should immediately seek out if you don’t know them already.

TITLE TIME
0:16
3:11
2:26
3:12
1:30
1:38
4:55
2:26
2:46
2:13
1:49
0:07
4:20
0:28
3:36
0:08
4:46

About These New Puritans

Hailing from the town of Southend, England, the four-piece These New Puritans play Fall- and PiL-inspired music that also takes on elements of electronica and dance. Comprised of vocalist Jack Barnett (who also plays the guitar and laptop), his twin brother and drummer George, keyboardist Sophie Sleigh-Johnson, and bassist (and man behind the sampler) Thomas Hein, the band formed in 2006, when all the members were still in their teens. Their edgy aesthetic and particular live show (Jack, for example, usually performed wearing a shirt fully buttoned to his neck) soon brought the group attention from the British press, enough that soon-to-be-former Christian Dior designer Hedi Slimane asked Barnett to compose something for his fall 2007 collection for Dior Homme, a piece, "Navigate, Navigate," that was then debuted in Paris in February at the fashion show. In October of that same year, These New Puritans issued an EP, Now Pluvial, on Angular Records. Their first U.S. release. "Navigate, Navigate," came out in America in February 2008, a 12" that acted as a primer for their debut full-length, Beat Pyramid, which emerged the following month. The follow-up album Hidden, which was co-produced by Graham Sutton of Bark Psychosis, was released in early 2010. Undergoing some transformations, including the departure of Sophie Sleigh-Johnson, the band returned with the very untraditional but well received Field of Reeds in 2013. ~ Marisa Brown

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