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About Turin Brakes
"If the Optimist was the soul of a heartbroken twenty one year old whose innocence was breaking then this record is perhaps a summation of where that soul is a decade later. Maybe a little more afraid of the world and its systems, wrestling with the idea of either fitting in or dropping out and pulling up the escape hatch." Olly Knights, summer 2013.
So what happens to an optimist when they have to face up to the realities of modern life? What to do when experience turns to weary pragmatism and - with it - wistful daydreams of escape?
A decade and a half into a career that's inspired artists as diverse as the Staves and Flux Pavilion, these are the questions posed by the sublime sixth album from Turin Brakes. From the majestic opening swoop and swirl of Time and Money through to the elegiac campfire slide of the album closer, Goodbye, We Were Here finds the band - Olly Knights and Gale Paridjanian along with long time collaborators Rob Allum and Eddie Myer - at their most assertive and consistent with a hypnotic collection of songs that nods to classic releases of the '70s and also to the triggers of existential dread that sit right at the heart of the information age.
Recorded over two weeks of eighteen hour days in the legendary Welsh studio Rockfield, We Were Here gorgeously chimes and echoes with the pastoral psychedelia of Pink Floyd, the sunset soul of Laurel Canyon, the blues of the Mississippi Delta and the band's own six-stringed past.
As a celebration of the tenth anniversary of the release of their critically lauded, award nominated debut - the Optimist LP - Turin Brakes took to the road in 2011 to play a series of shows where the album was performed in its entirety. For the band, this meant a process of relearning the songs, some of which hadn't been explored since back in 2001. That reassessment process proved a necessary spur in the creative process behind We Were Here.Lyrically, the songs return to themes of loneliness, disconnection and realizing one's own place in the scheme of things. Having recently released a set of intensely personal songs as a solo album (2012's If Not Now When), Knights took a more tangental approach when writing We Were Here.
Arriving as it does after a timely re-evaluation of some of their earliest recordings, Turin Brakes' superlative sixth album is something of a confident fresh chapter: a wide open door to the band's next decade. As the title says, We Were Here. Time, then, to join them there.