BEN HOWARD is pleased to announce the release of his highly anticipated sophomore album I Forget Were We Were, out October 21st, 2014 through Republic Records.
Stream the album on Spotify here !
“An impressive, tantalizing work” – The Telegraph (UK)
“This is an album that cuts deep” – Rolling Stone
“Howard never loses his sense of melody, and this album thrives in his sheer musicality” – Consequence of Sound
“Musically adventurous, sonically daring, and really rather stunning” – Q Magazine (UK)
Check out Ben Howard live in the US in 2015! Dates here.
In the depths of winter, beside a lighthouse, on a remote peninsula in southernmost Devon, Ben Howard set down to record his second album. It was a wild winter; bleak and fierce, and soon the elements began to creep into the music. Storms so fierce the whole studio shook. “The place where these songs were recorded is stamped upon them,” Howard says. “There’s a lot of power in that place.”
In late 2013 Howard returned from an extended tour in support of his first album — the Brit-winning, platinum-selling Every Kingdom. In the studio/barn alongside Howard were his band-mates Mickey Smith, Andrew ‘Bear’ Bond, Nat Wasson, India Bourne and Chris Bond — also the album’s producer.
To anyone familiar with Howard’s work to date this is certainly a startling album — the rootsy, pastoral folk and romantic leanings of Every Kingdom giving way to something braver and more adventurous.
The guitars lag and distort, the drums stand remote, the sweet fairness of Howard’s voice has given way to something more distant and restrained.
These songs are darker, more blistering than those of their predecessor, and in their squally beauty, Howard reveals himself an exceptional songwriter.
“Because the feeling of live music, the movement of music is so much more rewarding to listen to,” Howard says. “I love mistakes – one of my favourite things on records is the little wonky bits.”
He speaks of Sigur Ros, Atoms for Peace, Talk Talk and Neil Young’s autobiography: “We had it in the studio the whole time, so when we were losing our minds, or not getting on with each other, or stuff wasn’t working we were always referencing Neil Young. ‘What would Neil do?’ That was quite reassuring. It convinced us to play it live and just be gnarly.”
This record is a statement of intent: the powerful, sharp-eyed offering of a mature songwriter. “The music is heavier, the space and the fury is going to challenge people. But it’s me saying to people: ‘Are you sure you’re into this?’” Howard says. “I think there was a turning point in making this record when I started with real honest intentions – just playing what I wanted to play. It’s the sound of me not being distracted by what everyone else was doing. It’s the sound of me digging into myself.”