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Hard Believer is the new studio album by FINK: Fin Greenall on vocals/guitar, alongside bandmates Tim Thornton on drums/guitar, and Guy Whittaker on bass. It will be their first release on the R’COUP’D imprint, a label newly created by Greenall with the backing of the Ninja Tune team. Urban, bluesy, and alive, Hard Believer is inspired by life’s twists and turns, channelling hard-won triumphs and bittersweet experiences. It is a masterful collection of songs from an artist at the peak of his creative powers.

“We wanted to go deeper this time, and be more ambitious with the music,” Fin explains, “to move the sound forward without losing touch of where we’re from.” Recorded in seventeen days at Hollywood’s legendary Sound Factory studiosHard Believer is shot through with rawness and controlled aggression; an album replete with calm beginnings seguing into powerfully hypnotic loops and climactic finales.“It’s performance-oriented rather than track-oriented,” Fin says. “We recorded a lot of the vocals at the same time as the acoustic guitars so they aren’t always perfectly synchronised. But we like that honesty in our recordings.”

With Thornton and Whittaker now as trusted co-writers, work on the new songs began after the Perfect Darkness/Wheels tour finished in India in late 2012, continuing on subsequent trips to LA (where Greenall also wrote tracks for the William H Macy movie Rudderless, and with John Legend for the 12 Years a Slave soundtrack album). After a year of intensive writing sessions in Amsterdam, Brighton and London, the band journeyed to California to reunite with producer Billy Bush (Garbage, Beck, Foster the People). Other contributors to the album include Dutch jazz pianist Ruben Hein, with strings courtesy of Matt Kelly and Andrew Phillips.

The new album presents ten brand new songs, including the mighty “Shakespeare”, a tale of young love gone tragically sour as the mood darkens from acoustic to guttural rock; the spiky yet delicate “Looking Too Closely”, riding an irresistible piano-and-guitar groove; “Green And The Blue”, on which a vulnerable Greenall meditates on the constants in life that see you through tough times; “Two Days Later”, a deeply personal lament and one of only two songs that start and remain down-tempo; and the breathtaking “Pilgrim”, the latest collaboration with songwriter Blair Mackichan, co-writer of “This Is The Thing” from Fink’s 2007 Distance and Time, and “Honesty” from 2011’s Perfect Darkness.

Hard Believer continues the bold expansion of folk’s parameters begun by its predecessor, Perfect Darkness: “A delight… you don’t want it to end,” glowed a Guardian review, and at times on the epic 18-month tour that followed, it felt as if it never would. Such was the global popularity of the album that it also spawned not one, but two live records: 2012’s Wheels Turn Beneath My Feet, and 2013’s Fink Meets the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, which repurposed the songs as rolling mini-symphonies with one of the greatest symphony orchestras in the world. The campaign concluded with the release of final single “Warm Shadow,” accompanied by a cover of the song from Justin Vernon and Colin Stetson of Bon Iver.

Greenall has always been a guitarist; self-taught at a young age, it was a quiet and personal gift he kept largely to himself. He began creating trip-hop music in college, leading to his first purely electronic album Fresh Produce, released on Ninja Tune’s N-Tone label in 2000. It was six “long-assed” and “brutal” years of DJing before his next record, 2006’s Biscuits for Breakfast, unveiled the radical new singer-songwriter direction. Greenall had initially envisaged only a partial transition from the world of electronica, but it was Ninja Tune who insisted he either commit fully to the shift from behind the decks, or not at all. “Their encouragement helped me make one of the most important decisions of my career,” he admits.

Another big influence on the transition was producing and co-writing tracks for others from his basement studio; among them the actor Michael Pitt, and a teenage Amy Winehouse. “She blew my mind,” Greenall says. “At the time, if you didn’t look like one of Girls Aloud it was game over. Amy reminded us that it’s what you sound like and have to say, that counts.” One of their collaborations, “Half Time”, produced by Salaam Remi, can be heard on her posthumous collection Lioness: Hidden Treasures.

Much like Fink albums of the past, Hard Believer covers wide ground. Musically it explores folk, electronica, blues, and rock. But it’s the songwriting that really propels Fink into a new space: a serious evolution that should see him regarded as one of the UK’s great modern-day songwriters. “The term ‘Hard Believer’ comes from deep-south Americana; it means somebody who is difficult to persuade, who requires proof.” In truth, all anyone has to do here is listen to the powerful collection of songs on Hard Believer. The belief will surely follow.

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Fink Website

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[image_upload_id] => 19785 [label_id] => 13 [twitter_username] => Finkmusic [instagram_id] => [instagram_username] => [link] => [listed] => 1 [sortname] => Fink [created] => 2010-07-17 22:15:58 [modified] => 2015-03-16 17:46:48 [slug] => fink [fuga_id] => [description_clean] =>

Hard Believer is the new studio album by FINK: Fin Greenall on vocals/guitar, alongside bandmates Tim Thornton on drums/guitar, and Guy Whittaker on bass. It will be their first release on the R’COUP’D imprint, a label newly created by Greenall with the backing of the Ninja Tune team. Urban, bluesy, and alive, Hard Believer is inspired by life’s twists and turns, channelling hard-won triumphs and bittersweet experiences. It is a masterful collection of songs from an artist at the peak of his creative powers.

“We wanted to go deeper this time, and be more ambitious with the music,” Fin explains, “to move the sound forward without losing touch of where we’re from.” Recorded in seventeen days at Hollywood’s legendary Sound Factory studiosHard Believer is shot through with rawness and controlled aggression; an album replete with calm beginnings seguing into powerfully hypnotic loops and climactic finales.“It’s performance-oriented rather than track-oriented,” Fin says. “We recorded a lot of the vocals at the same time as the acoustic guitars so they aren’t always perfectly synchronised. But we like that honesty in our recordings.”

With Thornton and Whittaker now as trusted co-writers, work on the new songs began after the Perfect Darkness/Wheels tour finished in India in late 2012, continuing on subsequent trips to LA (where Greenall also wrote tracks for the William H Macy movie Rudderless, and with John Legend for the 12 Years a Slave soundtrack album). After a year of intensive writing sessions in Amsterdam, Brighton and London, the band journeyed to California to reunite with producer Billy Bush (Garbage, Beck, Foster the People). Other contributors to the album include Dutch jazz pianist Ruben Hein, with strings courtesy of Matt Kelly and Andrew Phillips.

The new album presents ten brand new songs, including the mighty “Shakespeare”, a tale of young love gone tragically sour as the mood darkens from acoustic to guttural rock; the spiky yet delicate “Looking Too Closely”, riding an irresistible piano-and-guitar groove; “Green And The Blue”, on which a vulnerable Greenall meditates on the constants in life that see you through tough times; “Two Days Later”, a deeply personal lament and one of only two songs that start and remain down-tempo; and the breathtaking “Pilgrim”, the latest collaboration with songwriter Blair Mackichan, co-writer of “This Is The Thing” from Fink’s 2007 Distance and Time, and “Honesty” from 2011’s Perfect Darkness.

Hard Believer continues the bold expansion of folk’s parameters begun by its predecessor, Perfect Darkness: “A delight… you don’t want it to end,” glowed a Guardian review, and at times on the epic 18-month tour that followed, it felt as if it never would. Such was the global popularity of the album that it also spawned not one, but two live records: 2012’s Wheels Turn Beneath My Feet, and 2013’s Fink Meets the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, which repurposed the songs as rolling mini-symphonies with one of the greatest symphony orchestras in the world. The campaign concluded with the release of final single “Warm Shadow,” accompanied by a cover of the song from Justin Vernon and Colin Stetson of Bon Iver.

Greenall has always been a guitarist; self-taught at a young age, it was a quiet and personal gift he kept largely to himself. He began creating trip-hop music in college, leading to his first purely electronic album Fresh Produce, released on Ninja Tune’s N-Tone label in 2000. It was six “long-assed” and “brutal” years of DJing before his next record, 2006’s Biscuits for Breakfast, unveiled the radical new singer-songwriter direction. Greenall had initially envisaged only a partial transition from the world of electronica, but it was Ninja Tune who insisted he either commit fully to the shift from behind the decks, or not at all. “Their encouragement helped me make one of the most important decisions of my career,” he admits.

Another big influence on the transition was producing and co-writing tracks for others from his basement studio; among them the actor Michael Pitt, and a teenage Amy Winehouse. “She blew my mind,” Greenall says. “At the time, if you didn’t look like one of Girls Aloud it was game over. Amy reminded us that it’s what you sound like and have to say, that counts.” One of their collaborations, “Half Time”, produced by Salaam Remi, can be heard on her posthumous collection Lioness: Hidden Treasures.

Much like Fink albums of the past, Hard Believer covers wide ground. Musically it explores folk, electronica, blues, and rock. But it’s the songwriting that really propels Fink into a new space: a serious evolution that should see him regarded as one of the UK’s great modern-day songwriters. “The term ‘Hard Believer’ comes from deep-south Americana; it means somebody who is difficult to persuade, who requires proof.” In truth, all anyone has to do here is listen to the powerful collection of songs on Hard Believer. The belief will surely follow.

[links_clean] =>

Fink Website

Facebook
Twitter
Soundcloud

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Simon Green, AKA Bonobo, is an artist very much at the peak of his powers. His 2013 album ‘The North Borders’ was the high watermark of his career to date: a masterful record, marrying Green's inimitable melodic genius to cutting edge electronics, bass and drums. 

An artist that constantly pushes himself outside of his musical comfort zone, Bonobo’s ranging personal tastes and regularly expanding range of synthesizers and instruments continue to take his productions to new levels. This outlook has earned him a reputation as one of the most pioneering figures in electronic music, in both his solo DJ sets and 12-piece live band shows. 

All this comes as the result of over ten years hard work, and five albums that have honed Green's skills. A born musician, Green - like many artists - expresses himself most articulately via his music. The result is that his work is always keenly felt, and always feels imperative. There are no wasted moments, and myriad great ones. 

It's tempting to relate Green's yearning, emotive aesthetic to his upbringing in rural Hampshire. His move to Brighton is also an influence; his skill at drum programming perhaps harking back to his days DJing and producing in the small, musically fertile town. Under the initial guidance of Tru Thoughts' Rob Luis and at nights such as Phonic:hoop, Bonobo found an early education in music. 

His first album - 2000's 'Animal Magic' - was released via Tru Thoughts before being picked up by Ninja Tune. It announced him as a serious talent; able to bring a true musician's edge to electronic music, with all the freedom that skill allowed. His subsequent albums for Ninja, Dial M for Monkey and Days to Come, developed his sensibility, won him fans across the globe, and saw him develop his live show into a mesmeric re-working of his records. 

He also worked hard as a DJ, a part of Green's arsenal that perhaps truly came into its own at the same time as 2010’s Black Sands. 2012 saw him take the uptempo, club re-edits of Black Sands from a seminal Boiler Room performance in London to dance floors across the world, and unveil a new light show that further enhanced the impact of these stunning songs. A remix album was released featuring reworkings by fans and peers such as Machinedrum, Floating Points, Mark Pitchard, Lapalux and Falty DL. 

Later the same year, he finally settled down in his New York studio to write his fifth album. The North Borders was another long stride forward - both a natural evolution and a continuation of the electronic palette of Black Sands. Thematic, resonant, addictive and perfectly formed, it's a thrillingly coherent statement piece. With vocal features from no less than Erykah Badu, as well as Grey Reverend (Cinematic Orchestra) and Cornelia (Portico Quartet) it's another finely balanced body of work, leaving room for the beautiful, rich productions themselves to breathe and shine. 

Bonobo has a long history of unearthing new talent (Andreya Triana, Bajka) and The North Borders saw him do so once again. The startling vocals of new collaborator Szjerdene are sprinkled across the album, and Green has yet again found the perfect voice to express where he's at. 

Since the album’s release, Green has gone on to play over 175 shows across three continents and 30 countries, wowing audiences of almost 2 million people with the hypnotic, extended live versions of his songs. He performed sold out shows at The Sydney Opera House and Brixton Academy, and his very own, day long festival at London’s Roundhouse. 2014 saw him and his band play the iconic Coachella festival, Sonar, Glastonbury and many more.  This period of extensive touring came to a breathtaking close with his largest show to date at London’s Alexandra Palace in November. In celebration, Ninja Tune released ‘The North Borders Tour. - Live’ in October. A deluxe release including a live album, hardback book and a DVD of seminal live performances from a truly memorable tour.

It’s a full schedule and then some, but one that’s constantly rewarding for his fans, and perhaps proves that Bonobo is not only one of the world’s hardest working artists in electronic music, but also one of its best.

[links] =>

Bonobo website

Facebook
Twitter
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Instagram

[image_upload_id] => 19635 [label_id] => 1 [twitter_username] => sibonobo [instagram_id] => 1322091 [instagram_username] => si_bonobo [link] => [listed] => 1 [sortname] => Bonobo [created] => 2010-07-17 22:15:59 [modified] => 2015-01-09 12:49:39 [slug] => bonobo [fuga_id] => [description_clean] =>

Simon Green, AKA Bonobo, is an artist very much at the peak of his powers. His 2013 album ‘The North Borders’ was the high watermark of his career to date: a masterful record, marrying Green's inimitable melodic genius to cutting edge electronics, bass and drums. 

An artist that constantly pushes himself outside of his musical comfort zone, Bonobo’s ranging personal tastes and regularly expanding range of synthesizers and instruments continue to take his productions to new levels. This outlook has earned him a reputation as one of the most pioneering figures in electronic music, in both his solo DJ sets and 12-piece live band shows. 

All this comes as the result of over ten years hard work, and five albums that have honed Green's skills. A born musician, Green - like many artists - expresses himself most articulately via his music. The result is that his work is always keenly felt, and always feels imperative. There are no wasted moments, and myriad great ones. 

It's tempting to relate Green's yearning, emotive aesthetic to his upbringing in rural Hampshire. His move to Brighton is also an influence; his skill at drum programming perhaps harking back to his days DJing and producing in the small, musically fertile town. Under the initial guidance of Tru Thoughts' Rob Luis and at nights such as Phonic:hoop, Bonobo found an early education in music. 

His first album - 2000's 'Animal Magic' - was released via Tru Thoughts before being picked up by Ninja Tune. It announced him as a serious talent; able to bring a true musician's edge to electronic music, with all the freedom that skill allowed. His subsequent albums for Ninja, Dial M for Monkey and Days to Come, developed his sensibility, won him fans across the globe, and saw him develop his live show into a mesmeric re-working of his records. 

He also worked hard as a DJ, a part of Green's arsenal that perhaps truly came into its own at the same time as 2010’s Black Sands. 2012 saw him take the uptempo, club re-edits of Black Sands from a seminal Boiler Room performance in London to dance floors across the world, and unveil a new light show that further enhanced the impact of these stunning songs. A remix album was released featuring reworkings by fans and peers such as Machinedrum, Floating Points, Mark Pitchard, Lapalux and Falty DL. 

Later the same year, he finally settled down in his New York studio to write his fifth album. The North Borders was another long stride forward - both a natural evolution and a continuation of the electronic palette of Black Sands. Thematic, resonant, addictive and perfectly formed, it's a thrillingly coherent statement piece. With vocal features from no less than Erykah Badu, as well as Grey Reverend (Cinematic Orchestra) and Cornelia (Portico Quartet) it's another finely balanced body of work, leaving room for the beautiful, rich productions themselves to breathe and shine. 

Bonobo has a long history of unearthing new talent (Andreya Triana, Bajka) and The North Borders saw him do so once again. The startling vocals of new collaborator Szjerdene are sprinkled across the album, and Green has yet again found the perfect voice to express where he's at. 

Since the album’s release, Green has gone on to play over 175 shows across three continents and 30 countries, wowing audiences of almost 2 million people with the hypnotic, extended live versions of his songs. He performed sold out shows at The Sydney Opera House and Brixton Academy, and his very own, day long festival at London’s Roundhouse. 2014 saw him and his band play the iconic Coachella festival, Sonar, Glastonbury and many more.  This period of extensive touring came to a breathtaking close with his largest show to date at London’s Alexandra Palace in November. In celebration, Ninja Tune released ‘The North Borders Tour. - Live’ in October. A deluxe release including a live album, hardback book and a DVD of seminal live performances from a truly memorable tour.

It’s a full schedule and then some, but one that’s constantly rewarding for his fans, and perhaps proves that Bonobo is not only one of the world’s hardest working artists in electronic music, but also one of its best.

[links_clean] =>

Bonobo website

Facebook
Twitter
Soundcloud
Instagram

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There is a certain element of playfulness and wonder that can be heard in the music of the Viennese-born, self-taught multi-instrumentalist and producer Oliver Thomas Johnson, aka Dorian Concept.

After being exposed to hip hop in his early teens, he started to experiment with music production software on his parents’ computer at the age of 15. Around the same time, he picked up the piano, electric bass, and soprano saxophone, and since then he has been fascinated by combining the world of music production with the one of instrumental improvisation.

Dorian Concept started his career as a typical “bedroom producer” with a MySpace page in his late teens and enrolled in the University of Applied Sciences in Salzburg to study multi-media art in 2005. Just five years later, he was performing at the Royal Albert Hall with the Cinematic Orchestra, a group he had always admired, at the twentieth anniversary gala of Ninja Tune.

Some of the important stations of Dorian Concept’s rise from a bedroom producer studying in Salzburg to a Royal Albert Hall performer date back to 2006, when he started uploading a series of short videos of himself improvising on synthesizers on Youtube ­ starting with "Fooling Around on MicroKorg” ­ that have garnered over a million hits. Within a year, BBC radio greats like Benji B, Giles Peterson, and Mary Anne Hobbs championed his early digital releases, and shortly thereafter he started touring internationally.

In 2008, he participated in the Red Bull Musical Academy and released his first EP Maximized Minimalization on the Viennese label Affine Records. This EP ­ along with the subsequent track “The Fucking Formula” ­ was his take on instrumental hip hop at the time. His single “Trilingual Dance Sexperience” became a beast of its own right, acknowledged as a landmark for that unique Dorian Concept sound. Boomkat described it as “what sounds like the culmination of the last 10 years of techno, grime, hiphop club music and cutting-edge electronics attempting to race each other to the finishing line of the decade.”

In 2009, Kindred Spirits/Nod Navigators released his debut album When Planets Explode, which enjoyed critical and underground acclaim. The next two years were a blur of different cities and stages that brought his live show to Australia, Asia, all over Europe, and the States, while playing keys as part of Flying Lotus’ live band in between. His improvisational skills and virtuosity on his trusty MicroKorg shine during his animated live performances.

Dorian Concept’s jazz-influenced beat concoctions reap havoc on the dance-floor but never lose their sense of musicality. Unconventional chord changes, expressive dynamics and quirky layers of counterpoint melodies are parts of his unmistakable musical voice. He dots effortlessly through different genres and styles: from sublime electronica to hyperactive garage to avant-garde dancehall. Therefore, it made perfect sense when the multifaceted imprint Ninja Tune invited Dorian Concept to contribute to its twentieth anniversary box set in 2010 with the standout track "Her Tears Taste Like Pears.” It was no surprise that Ninja Tune then added him to its roster, releasing an EP under the same title in 2011.

Shortly after the Ninja Tune EP, Dorian Concept decided to take some time off to craft a new sound. He abandoned his signature use of the Mikrokorg and started working with a Wurlitzer electronic piano and a handful of analogue synthesizers. Joined Ends - his forthcoming album on Ninja Tune - showcases a new sound that reveals a radically different side of his artistic repertoire. A departure from rigid beat-making, he has chosen to concentrate on his intuition and his keyboard skills. Dorian Concept is also expanding his much lauded live show into a trio with touring planned for Autumn 2014 and beyond.

Joined Ends is his most deliberate, focused, and liberating work to date.

[links] =>

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[image_upload_id] => 19652 [label_id] => 1 [twitter_username] => dorianconcept [instagram_id] => [instagram_username] => [link] => [listed] => 1 [sortname] => Dorian Concept [created] => 2010-11-24 11:23:09 [modified] => 2014-07-03 16:52:53 [slug] => dorian-concept [fuga_id] => [description_clean] =>

There is a certain element of playfulness and wonder that can be heard in the music of the Viennese-born, self-taught multi-instrumentalist and producer Oliver Thomas Johnson, aka Dorian Concept.

After being exposed to hip hop in his early teens, he started to experiment with music production software on his parents’ computer at the age of 15. Around the same time, he picked up the piano, electric bass, and soprano saxophone, and since then he has been fascinated by combining the world of music production with the one of instrumental improvisation.

Dorian Concept started his career as a typical “bedroom producer” with a MySpace page in his late teens and enrolled in the University of Applied Sciences in Salzburg to study multi-media art in 2005. Just five years later, he was performing at the Royal Albert Hall with the Cinematic Orchestra, a group he had always admired, at the twentieth anniversary gala of Ninja Tune.

Some of the important stations of Dorian Concept’s rise from a bedroom producer studying in Salzburg to a Royal Albert Hall performer date back to 2006, when he started uploading a series of short videos of himself improvising on synthesizers on Youtube ­ starting with "Fooling Around on MicroKorg” ­ that have garnered over a million hits. Within a year, BBC radio greats like Benji B, Giles Peterson, and Mary Anne Hobbs championed his early digital releases, and shortly thereafter he started touring internationally.

In 2008, he participated in the Red Bull Musical Academy and released his first EP Maximized Minimalization on the Viennese label Affine Records. This EP ­ along with the subsequent track “The Fucking Formula” ­ was his take on instrumental hip hop at the time. His single “Trilingual Dance Sexperience” became a beast of its own right, acknowledged as a landmark for that unique Dorian Concept sound. Boomkat described it as “what sounds like the culmination of the last 10 years of techno, grime, hiphop club music and cutting-edge electronics attempting to race each other to the finishing line of the decade.”

In 2009, Kindred Spirits/Nod Navigators released his debut album When Planets Explode, which enjoyed critical and underground acclaim. The next two years were a blur of different cities and stages that brought his live show to Australia, Asia, all over Europe, and the States, while playing keys as part of Flying Lotus’ live band in between. His improvisational skills and virtuosity on his trusty MicroKorg shine during his animated live performances.

Dorian Concept’s jazz-influenced beat concoctions reap havoc on the dance-floor but never lose their sense of musicality. Unconventional chord changes, expressive dynamics and quirky layers of counterpoint melodies are parts of his unmistakable musical voice. He dots effortlessly through different genres and styles: from sublime electronica to hyperactive garage to avant-garde dancehall. Therefore, it made perfect sense when the multifaceted imprint Ninja Tune invited Dorian Concept to contribute to its twentieth anniversary box set in 2010 with the standout track "Her Tears Taste Like Pears.” It was no surprise that Ninja Tune then added him to its roster, releasing an EP under the same title in 2011.

Shortly after the Ninja Tune EP, Dorian Concept decided to take some time off to craft a new sound. He abandoned his signature use of the Mikrokorg and started working with a Wurlitzer electronic piano and a handful of analogue synthesizers. Joined Ends - his forthcoming album on Ninja Tune - showcases a new sound that reveals a radically different side of his artistic repertoire. A departure from rigid beat-making, he has chosen to concentrate on his intuition and his keyboard skills. Dorian Concept is also expanding his much lauded live show into a trio with touring planned for Autumn 2014 and beyond.

Joined Ends is his most deliberate, focused, and liberating work to date.

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[counter_player] => [counter_biog] => [tracking] => [conversions] => [hide_preorder] => 0 [hide_tracks] => 0 [hide_buy] => 0 ) ) ) )
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Artist Date City Venue Buy
Fink Friday, Jul 4th Rudolstadt, DE TFF Festival Buy
Bonobo Friday, Jul 4th Ottawa, CA RBC Royal Bank Ottawa Bluesfest Buy
Dorian Concept Friday, Jul 4th Amsterdam, NL Pitch Buy
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