Metronomy’s eagerly awaited new album ‘Summer 08‘ will be released on July 1st. Excitement is building, with the two tracks that have previewed – ‘Old Skool’and ‘Back Together’ – have accumulated a total of 1.4 million plays at YouTube and Spotify, while positive reviews have also been backed with radio support from Radio 1, Beats and 6 Music amongst others.
The next step ahead of the album’s release comes with the new single ‘Night Owl‘ which is available now. The most immediate of the three ‘Summer 08’ tracks to date, ‘Night Owl’ pulsates with a disco-groove – at once laidback, then nervously on edge – that captures the ambience of a downbeat soul lost in London’s nocturnal summer swelter. The accompanying video to ‘Night Owl’ which will drop in the next few weeks, was filmed in the Palm Desert, Palm Springs by the equally unconventional musician/director Mr. Oizo.
This last week has seen Metronomy’s sonic auteur Joe Mount complete further creative activity in advance of the album’s release. He played a special ‘Summer 08’ DJ set at a rain-soaked Field Day which featured new tracks, plus special remixes and edits. The ‘Summer 08’ DJ set will also call at the basement of Shoreditch’s Ace Hotel for the Dummy x Because party on June 29th and also at Bristol’s Simple Things Festival on October 22nd.
In addition, a special album preview event saw the students of Central St. Martins create over twenty interactive art installations which were inspired by the ‘Summer 08‘ album. Mentored by the team at Pulse Films, the students created a variety of media – music videos, art installations and visual interpretations – at an event which offered fans the first chance to hear several new tracks from the album.
Entirely written, played and produced by Mount himself, ‘Summer 08‘ finds the multi-instrumentalist reflecting on his experiences around the time that Metronomy first landed a major breakthrough with the ‘Nights Out‘ album – the guilt at spending key moments in loved ones’ lives in the back of a tour bus, and the confused mania of finding himself a critical darling.
It’s a concept that’s been gestating ever since, but the opportunities and challenges that resulted in the expansive, ambitious and Mercury Prize–nominated ‘The English Riviera’ and the Motown-inspired ‘Love Letters’ understandably took precedence.
“I had those other albums – and how I wanted to record in bigger studios – out of my system,” he explains. “I wanted to make another record with the naivety of ‘Nights Out’: ten tracks, straight up, upbeat. Write another banger, then another, and don’t really think about it.”
Mount’s aim for ‘Summer 08’ was to make a mature, eclectic pop record in the vein of classic works by OutKast, David Bowie and Daft Punk. Recorded in Black Box Studios in France with mixing courtesy of Bob Clearmountain (Bruce Springsteen, David Bowie) and Neal Pogue (OutKast), it’s the most daring and creative Metronomy album for a good reason – they won’t be touring it any time soon. “I want to have a break from touring but I don’t want a break from putting out music,” says Mount, noting that he wants to prioritise time with his two young children.
In addition to ‘Night Owl’, ‘Old Skool’ and ‘Back Together’, other highlights include the warbling festival anthem-in-the-making ‘Miami Logic’, which sounds like ‘Word Up’ as performed by Devo; an early East Coast hip-hop rough ride called ‘16 Beat‘ about a love affair between man and drum machine; and a brilliant moment of Bowie worship titled ‘Mick Slow‘.
It’s the album’s duet with Swedish superstar Robyn, ‘Hang Me Out To Dry’, mixed by Erol Alkan, that’s the songwriter’s favourite though. An early draft of the track was recorded for ‘The English Riviera’ but it has only now realised its full potential. In fact, many of the tracks have emerged from demos and loops that date back to the late 2000s era. It’s an album that reiterates why influential fans such as Kanye West, Tyler The Creator, Lady Gaga, Daft Punk and Josh Homme have all fallen under Metronomy’s spell.
‘Summer 08’ will be released on digital, CD and vinyl (with CD included) formats as well as a Deluxe vinyl / CD boxset. ‘Back Together’, ‘Old Skool’ and ‘Night Owl’ are all available as instant grat tracks for people who pre-order the album from http://smarturl.it/r0q7ns.