Los Campesinos! celebrate the release of their sixth album, Sick Scenes (to be released worldwide via Wichita Recordings on 24 February 2017).
Co-produced by long-time collaborator John Goodmanson and band member Tom Bromley, during Euro 2016 in Fridao, Portugal, the album exists as an expression of the pent-up aggression the band felt due to being inactive for so long. The album is a celebration of just getting to be a band, of getting to play music with friends.
Thematically the record is concerned with fumbling for personal relevance while trying to be a better person. Repressing anxiety and attempting to function while constantly maintaining the perfect two beer buzz. It is set upon a backdrop of non-league football, prescribed medication and crumbling home towns.
On the writing of the follow up to the band’s 2013 album NO BLUES, lead guitarist Tom said: “This was the longest the band had gone without releasing any music. That was for a whole bunch of reasons, but I also deliberately tried to resist putting ideas together for as long as possible so I could feel excited about writing again. I was touring with Perfume Genius in 2015 and I think a combination of long van rides listening to music with too much time to (over)think, as well as getting to play guitar on PG’s beautiful and weird, affecting songs every night got me all excited about working on song ideas again. So halfway through the tour we had a fortnight off in Seattle where i put together all the ideas I’d been collecting and started the process of a new album”.
The first song lifted from the album is entitled I BROKE UP IN AMARANTE. it’s emergence explained thus
Tom: “In March 2016 I went to Melbourne to produce a record for a band called Ceres. We went super deep on the details and textures for their album, but it was the songs themselves that left me with a hunger to do something with a similar energy. I’d had the chorus sitting around for years, but it was only when I had the idea to use it as a major-key payoff to a minor verse that it made sense, and played over a loop of a distorted bowed saw, it all came together really quickly”.
Gareth: “The song’s about battling with bad mental health, trying to comfort and reason with yourself over something you can’t control. Specifically it’s about how my main coping mechanism was to keep myself constantly drunk in the blistering heat of Amarante while being failed by a largely terrible international football tournament”.