Younger Fathers have spoken to NME about their 2023 Mercury Prize shortlisted album ‘Heavy Heavy‘, taking part in with Depeche Mode and the “abundance” of concepts they’ve for his or her subsequent album. Watch our interview with the band above.
Having already gained the Mercury Prize again in 2014 for his or her debut album ‘Dead’, the Scottish trio of Kayus Bankole, Alloysious Massaquoi and Graham G Hastings discover themselves nominated once more for his or her 2023 fourth album ‘Heavy Heavy’ – a document they advised NME was pushed by “sense of togetherness”.
“When we were making the songs, we recorded a lot of music, and the thread that held all the songs together was this communal aspect,” mentioned Hastings on the launch of the prize yesterday (Thursday July 27). “Surprisingly we recorded this in a studio in a basement with no home windows, simply the three of us. That helped us punch out of the room and make a document that seemed like a bunch of individuals being collectively.
“We were reacting in moments, rather than going down a typical songwriting avenue. We’ve known each other 21 years now, so we’re all very comfortable in telling each other if something is good or something is bad. We’re not shy and we can all be spontaneous. That’s all we wanted to lean into with this album. We didn’t really talk that much. If we did, maybe the album wouldn’t have been made. The talking comes out in the music.”
He added: “It wasn’t a planned thing. We just wanted to see what would happen. This is what happened.”
Admitting to a shared “telepathy” (which prolonged to the band sporting the identical brown outfit color scheme to the Prize launch with out even discussing it) in addition they mentioned that spirit joined them on stage, and has led to a blossoming variety of followers going to see them reside.
“More people are on board,” mentioned Bankole. “You hear the music, but it actually has life when you see it live. As much as we can see through the recording process, being together, having this bond and telepathic communication where we don’t even have to speak in the studio – that translates on stage.”
1000’s would even have caught Younger Fathers once they supported Depeche Mode at their big Twickenham stadium gig final night time. After Martin Gore hailed them as “just so different to everything else” when chatting with NME, the trio described the synth-pop icons as “chilled and really welcoming – and revelled within the problem of acting at a such an enormous for them.
“Aye, it was an experience – playing in front of a stadium full of people and some of them not really wanting to be there, but it was good,” mentioned Hastings. “It was our first time taking part in to crowds like that. For us, it was simply one other notch. You undergo one thing, and also you realise the great and unhealthy of one thing, and work it. We all the time go away the reside present to be open for the spontaneity and issues to occur.
“It’s a different beast, especially when you’re the support in a stadium and no one is really there for you. It took us back to how we always operated before when we were always playing to a wee crowd. How do you make an impact in 30 minutes with people who don’t know you?”
Younger Fathers – ‘Heavy Heavy’ Art work
Being up in opposition to the likes of Arctic Monkeys, J Hus, Jessie Ware, Jockstrap, RAYE and Ezra Collective for the Mercury Prize, the trio concluded that there’s “no competition” actually with all shortlisted acts already winners, however that you need to “always bet on yourself”. Past that, the remainder of the yr provides extra intensive touring for the band, with their sights set on making much more new music.
“Hopefully we’ll have time to enter the studio again and formulate these ideas that we’ve been grabbing from the air while we’ve been on the road,” mentioned Bankole. “We have a lot of songs that we recorded during the process of ‘Heavy Heavy’, that we still think are great. Maybe we’ll be working with those too. There’s an abundance of ideas.”
Hastings added: “All of us have a number of ideas on a regular basis concerning the subsequent album. We’ve been having fun with working with a reside band and extra folks and that sense of communality. It’s fairly infectious so it could possibly be one thing like that, or the exact opposite.
“Whatever will be, will be. As with this record, there was never an over-arching concept. We needed to just get back together in the studio and see if we could still do it. After two minutes we realised we could, so we kept going.”
The winner of the Mercury Prize might be introduced at a reside ceremony at London’s Eventim Apollo on September 7.