19 March 2012

culture

listen: plumb

Story by Andrew Reinholds

The impressive music making duo have returned with more heavenly harmonies for our listening pleasure.


Abstract, angular and arrhythmic, Field Music’s fourth album is a bewildering collection of ideas that hurtle by at breakneck speed recalling the stilted pop of XTC spliced with The Beatles’ lush Abbey Road-era orchestrations.

Brothers Peter and David Brewis are Field Music and perhaps it is their relative isolation from the mainstream in the far North East that more than anything influences their particularly complex and unique approach to music making.

Multiple time shifts permeate each of the fifteen tracks of the album meaning one rarely gets the opportunity to become familiar with a particular hook before you are taken off again on a new tangent that stretches and warps the song into a new shape almost completely unrecognisable to where you started.

At first listen it can be baffling and more than a little disorientating, however with repeated listening the share craft and creativity on display becomes far easier to both recognise and admire.

It’s pop at its most pure – from the sublime harmony of ‘A New Town’ that builds sweetly from the most simple of bass lines to the driven throb of ‘Just Like Everyone Else’ and the anthemic closer ‘(I Keep Thinking About) A New Thing that layers idea upon idea to close the album with a real punch.

Elsewhere there is plenty of time for introspection; like on the wry ‘Sorry Again Mate, or the wistful piano melodies of ‘So Long Then’ and ‘From Hide and Seek To Heartache’.

Intelligent and playful, Plum is a rough leftfield pop gem.


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