- 04 Mar 20
Most ambitious outing yet for ex-Mercury nominees.
The press materials for Field Music’s latest describe it as a “19 track song cycle about the after-effects of the First World War”, stating it covers everything from air traffic control to sanitary towels. Pretentious sounding on paper, I’d argue there’s a theme to Making A New World. To me, it sounds more like an ode to creativity, merging diverse genres, instruments and topics into an experimental album – albeit a surprisingly upbeat one.
It begins as it means to go on, wrongfooting the listener with its unpredictability. Two gloomy opening instrumentals blossom into the bouncy, piano-driven ‘Coffee Or Wine’. Next up is the funkier ‘Best Kept Garden’, which feels like a cut from Vampire Weekend’s similarly eclectic last LP. ‘I Thought You Were Something Else’, meanwhile, blends smooth jazz with cinematic Western guitars. Just when you think you have a handle on proceedings, Field Music dip into disco with infectious earworms ‘Only In A Man’s World’ and ‘Money Is A Memory’.
Recorded mostly in two run-throughs on a single day, Making A New World at times feels messy – a jumble of disparate lyrical ideas and sounds. But Field Music also come across as a band having the time of their lives.
Making A New World is best experienced in its 42-minute entirety, with the ace transitions between songs giving the feel of one epic extended track. Though patchy in parts, this is a record well worth checking out.