Great Britain has always been famous for its music, especially since the early 1960s when the British Invasion led by The Beatles, helped to secure British performers a major place in the development of pop and rock music. Last July we talked about Muse, Blur and Marina and the Diamonds, some extremely talented British acts (you can read the article here). We’ll talk here about another 4 great bands from the UK who released an album in 2015.
–In Dream by Editors – Pias Recordings
Editors is certainly not a new band. Indeed In Dream is the fifth album of the British band from Stafford. Formed in 2003, Editors became one of the leading bands in the post-punk revival that swept America and England at the beginning of the 21st century. Their first album was a success and its sound earned comparisons to the dark, dramatic atmospherics of contemporary bands like Interpol and older bands such as Joy Division and Echo & the Bunnymen.
About the new record, the lead singer, Tom says : “Our new record is called In Dream, it’s out in October. Our last record was the sound of us learning to walk again, with new legs! In Dream, our first self produced album, is us diving into the computer, a real studio record, made in isolation by the 5 of us. » In Dream is the second album to feature the new line-up of the band with Justin Lockey and Elliott Williams alongside founding members Tom Smith, Russell Leetch and Ed Lay. It may not please the fans of the first line-up as they turned their main focus towards the electronic but they still keep their very unique dark signature.
–Keep the Village Alive by Stereophonics – Pias Recordings
Keep the Village Alive is the ninth studio album by Welsh rock band Stereophonics. They have become one of the UK’s most reliable guitar bands with almost 20 years in the business ! Since 1998, Stereophonics have gone on to join a select group of bands (Among them The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Oasis, Blur, U2…) to have 5 consecutive UK number one albums, starting with Performance and Cocktails in 1999 and ending with Pull The Pin in 2007 and now «Keep The Village Alive went to number 1 in the UK on its first week !
Their new record was recorded in a small house in west London where the band have their studio but singer and guitarist Kelly Jones said it was infused with the spirit of their origins in a former coal mining in south Wales.
The album does not disappoint with catchy hits like C’est la vie or I wanna get lost with you that will please their fans. It’s clear that Stereophonics haven’t lost their energy with this new album and Kelly Jones’ voice is still as remarkable as ever ! The band played in France last summer at Rock en Seine Festival and delivered a rocking performance. We hope they will be back soon! In the meantime, you can see them in the UK for their big arena tour.
–Paper gods by Duran Duran – Warner Music
Formed in Birmingham (England) in 1978, Duran Duran is one of the most culturally influential and commercially successful bands of all time, topping the charts around the world over the past three decades and selling more than 100 million records worldwide. The band has been honored with multiple Grammy, BRIT, Ivor Novello, and MTV Video Music Lifetime Achievement Awards, as well as a 20th Century Style Icon award from the City of Milan. In July, they will receive the Spotify UK Lifetime Achievement Award at this year’s 40th Anniversary O2 Silver Clef Awards. Tireless innovators, they are always at the vanguard of music, fashion, art, technology and film – a group with unique and everlasting appeal.
Duran Duran released their 14th studio album, Paper Gods in September 2015. The songs on the album capture the duality and sense of conflict at the heart of Duran Duran’s music. “It really goes back to that strange early Duran mix: the hard-edged pop, coexisting with this dark, weird, experimental side,” John says. “That’s something that’s essential to all of us,” Nick adds. “It’s great to be able to lift people’s spirits – and your own – with a strong shot of pure pop, but the world we live in isn’t all just made of that stuff, so it seems natural to me that we have kept one foot in the darker, more Gothic side of life.” We love the many special guests on the album such as Janelle Monáe (on the first single “Pressure Off”), former Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist John Frusciante, Canadian Juno-Award winning singer Kiesza, British singer/songwriter Mr Hudson, violinist Davidé Rossi and actress Lindsay Lohan. Duran Duran can still make you dance!
–Wilder mind by Mumford and Sons – Island
Mumford and Sons is the youngest band mentioned here but they got success as soon as they started! In 2007, Marcus Mumford (lead singer) formed Mumford & Sons with Ben Lovett, Ted Dwane and Winston Marshall. The group soon won over audiences with their interesting fusion of rock, folk and bluegrass styles. After releasing a few EPs, the band released its debut album Sigh No More in 2009 which became a huge success worldwide. In 2012, Mumford enjoyed another surge of popularity with the band’s next release, Babel.
Wilder Mind is their third studio album and was released in May 2015. Once again, It was an international success in its first week on sale. The album marks a departure from the group’s folk rock sound, as they abandoned their signature acoustic instruments (such as banjo for instance) for electric ones and added a session drummer to fill out their rhythm section. Wilder Mind received largely mixed reviews because of that. They may have lost a few fans too! Despite the big change that can be upsetting, it’s a great evolution with strong songs such as Believe or The Wolf that were both singles.
The band played Main Square Festival in Arras last July and will hopefully be back in France soon. They are planning a big tour in the UK for December 2015.