Napoleon IIIrd

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For the Emperor of the French, see Napoleon III.
Napoleon IIIrd
Origin London, England
Genres Experimental
Years active 2004–present
Labels Brainlove Records / Dance to the Radio/
Members James Mabbett

Napoleon IIIrd is a musician, solo artist and producer who is based in London, England.


After his previous band (Little Japanese Toy) split in 2004, James Mabbett decided to go it alone. Driven by a rediscovered love for The Beach Boys and a continued love of skewed dance music and loud guitars, he became Napoleon IIIrd. Promptly retreating to his newly built home studio in Leeds, Napoleon resurfaced six months later armed with a surround-sound system, a 40-year-old reel-to-reel player, an acoustic guitar on a pole with built-in strobe light and a battery of new songs.

Recorded after several years of regular live performances and two limited, sold-out EPs (released on Leeds based Dance to the Radio and Brainlove Records), ‘In Debt To:’, Napoleon IIIrd’s debut album, displays a meticulously refined sound, both lo-fi and complex in its production; behind the ragged vocals and strummed acoustic guitar lie swirling layers of brass and humming organs.

In 2006 he recorded and co-produced The Independent Scrutineer by labelmate Pagan Wanderer Lu. He has also contributed backing vocals to various songs by post-rock band iLiKETRAiNS.

In 2007 Napoleon moved to Holmfirth, at the foot of the Pennines. Where he has recorded Hideki Yukawa, (a mini album released on 16 February 2009) and his second full album, 'Christiania.' Christiania came out to considerable critical fanfare in 2010, also on Brainlove Records. It received favourable reviews from NME, MOJO, Clash, Artrocker, Word, Drowned In Sound, The Fly. Loud and Quiet, The Line Of Best Fit and many others.

In late 2011 Napoleon IIIrd relocated to London where he set up his studio and has started working on new music.

Napoleon has remixed the likes of The Cribs, ¡Forward Russia!, Los Campesinos, Sky Larkin, Duels, Ill Ease, Grammatics, Johnny Foreigner, iConcur, and L'Étranger.





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