The Maccabees (band)
||This article may require cleanup to meet Wikipedia's quality standards. (August 2009)|
|Genres||Indie rock, indie pop|
Fierce Panda Records
|Past members||Robert Dylan Thomas|
The Maccabees are an indie rock band from London, England. They have released three albums so far, Colour It In in 2007, with a follow-up, Wall of Arms, released on 4 May 2009. Their most recent album Given to the Wild was released on 9 January 2012. Finishing only two new songs so far, their next album is expected for release in September 2014.
The band came up with the name by flicking through the Bible and picking out a random word. Despite adopting a name with religious connotations, lead singer Orlando Weeks has more recently affirmed, in an interview on Steve Lamacq's BBC Radio 1 show, that none of the band is religious. Their lyrics often include an atheistic theme, in particular their second album's title track, "Wall of Arms" and "All in Your Rows" from their debut album.
2007–2009: Colour It In
Their debut single, "X-Ray", was released on Promise records on 28 November 2005, and received some evening play on London radio station Xfm London. They received little significant exposure, however, until six months later, when they released their second single, "Latchmere", the subject of which is the wave machine at the Latchmere Leisure Centre in Battersea, South London, on Fierce Panda Records in April 2006. This was championed by Radio 1 DJ Steve Lamacq and received airtime on MTV2. The video, directed by Hugh Frost and Samuel Bebbington, also proved an internet hit after it was posted on YouTube.
The band are currently signed to major label Fiction Records, and released their début album Colour It In in May 2007. Because an early copy of the album appeared on the New York Times website, Colour It In became available to download exclusively from iTunes on 16 December, before its physical release on 14 May, in an effort to combat the leak. The single "First Love" was their first to chart in the UK top 40, and was followed by "About Your Dress", which peaked at No. 33. Their album fared much better, which was released to positive reviews, and charted at No. 24. They then toured the USA with fellow indie group Bloc Party. A full UK tour followed from October 2007, culminating in a sell-out show at the Roundhouse venue in London.
2009–2010: Wall of Arms
On the run-up to the release of their second album, the band played two new songs to Steve Lamacq on his "In New Music We Trust" show on Radio 1 in May 2008, "No Kind Words" and "Young Lions". The band also played a string of small venues in the UK to test out new songs, in March and April 2008. The Maccabees performed at Offset Festival in London as well the Underage Festival in August 2008.
On Zane Lowe's Radio 1 show in February 2009, Felix confirmed the name of the follow-up album to be Wall of Arms, an announcement that coincided with the release of the free downloadable track, "No Kind Words". On 16 March, Radio 1 DJ Steve Lamacq played the band's first single from Wall of Arms entitled Love You Better, the video to which was posted exclusively on ClashMusic.com on 27 March.
Wall of Arms was released on 4 May 2009. It entered the UK albums chart at No.13 and received positive reviews with the NME giving the album 8/10. At the end of the year, Artrocker made the album joint No.1 Album of 2009 along with Yeah Yeah Yeahs' "It's Blitz!".
The band performed at NewcastleGateshead's Evolution Festival on 25 May 2009. They finished their set with "Love You Better". They played before The View and after Little Boots on the Spillers Wharf Stage.
In July 2009, second single "Can You Give It" was released. The Maccabees invited the Dodworth Colliery Band of Barnsley to record a rousing brass version of the single for the B-side. The Guardian interviewed Orlando and Felix during the recording session. The accompanying video for "Can You Give It" was filmed at the infamous Coopers Hill annual cheese rolling race in Gloucestershire.
On 3 October 2009, the five-piece band played a gig at Brixton Academy to finish off their Wall of Arms tour. The band pulled in a huge crowd for their homecoming show at the O2, as well as a brass section for many of their songs as they performed their entire 2009 album and a host of tracks from their 2007 debut Colour It In. During the set Felix White declared the Academy as 'the best venue in the world'. The Guardian ran a five star live review of the gig.
In November 2009, The Maccabees collaborated with rapper Roots Manuva on a heady re-working of Wall of Arms album track and live favourite "No Kind Words". The track, newly titled "Empty Vessels", features new lyrics and vocals from fellow south Londoner Roots. It was debuted on Zane Lowe's evening show on Radio One on 11 November. The single release of "Empty Vessels" was made available on iTunes from 24 November 2009 on Fiction Records.
2012–2013: Given to the Wild
The Maccabees debuted new song "Child" in Brighton in August 2010, as well as playing the Main Stage at the Reading & Leeds festival 2010, debuting new song titled "Forever I've Known", displaying what seems to be a darker, deeper sound for the band.
They played new songs "Child", "Feel to Follow", "Pelican", "Ayla", "Went Away", "Forever I've Known" and "Grew Up at Midnight" at The Wedgewood Rooms, Portsmouth on 8 August 2011.
The first single from the album was "Pelican", it was first played on 15 November 2011 on BBC Radio 1 by Zane Lowe. It has since been uploaded to YouTube as an audio, along with its release date of 9 January 2012.
It was released on 9 January 2012 to very favourable reviews, it currently holds a score of 72 on Metacritic, a site that averages out critics reviews. At the 58th Ivor Novello awards, held at Grosvenor hotel in London on Thursday 16 May 2013, "Pelican" won Best Contemporary Song.
The album was at No. 1 on the midweek chart update, at the end of the week it debuted No. 4 on the UK Album Chart, the highest Maccabees release to date there.
On 12 September 2012 the album was nominated for the 2012 Mercury Prize. On 24 October 2012 the album was certified gold in the UK.
2014–present: new album
In 2013 The Maccabees announced in an NME article that they were hoping to release a fourth album in early 2014.  However, in January 2014 in another article with NME, guitarist Felix White stated, 'We started the record at the beginning of 2013. We went into the studio with the idea that it was going to be finished by now. And we've finished two songs. We've got a lot of songs but every time you write something new, it raises the standard.' Frontman Orlando Weeks added, 'we haven't really come across the songs that set the tone or mood for this record yet, we're kind of shooting in the dark. But I like that: there isn't a specific thing I'm trying to funnel stuff into.' The release of the album is penciled in for September 2014.  The album also featured as part of an NME rundown of 100 albums to look forward to in 2014.
- Current members
- Orlando Weeks – vocals (2004–present)
- Hugo White – guitars (2004–present)
- Felix White – guitars, backing vocals (2004–present)
- Rupert Jarvis – bass (2004–present)
- Sam Doyle – drums (2008–present)
- Will White – keyboards and samplers (2010–present)
- Former members
- Robert Dylan Thomas – drums (2004–2008)
- "The Maccabees at Fiction Records". Fiction Records. Fiction Records. Retrieved 28 May 2013.
- Hall, Duncan (20 March 2009). "The Maccabees Move Back to London". The Argus. Retrieved 28 May 2013.
- Bray, Elisa (10 February 2012). "The Maccabees - The quiet men of guitar rock". The Independent. Retrieved 28 May 2013.
- "Talking Shop: The Maccabees". BBC Entertainment. 7 January 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-14.
- "NME Album Reviews – The Maccabees: Colour It In". Nme.Com. 2007-04-27. Retrieved 2012-03-19.
- "Maccabees Video Exclusive | Clash Music Exclusive Video". Clashmusic.com. 2009-03-27. Retrieved 2012-03-19.
- "NME Album Reviews – Album review: The Maccabees". Nme.Com. 2009-04-28. Retrieved 2012-03-19.
- "Dodworth Colliery MW Brass Band". Dodworthcollieryband.co.uk. 2011-12-11. Retrieved 2012-03-19.
- "Download the Maccabees and the Dodworth Colliery Band". The Guardian (London). 8 July 2009. Retrieved 25 May 2010.
- Barton, Laura (7 July 2009). "Where there's Maccabees there's brass". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 25 May 2010.
- "Can You Give It (Exclusive Brand New Video)". YouTube. Retrieved 2012-03-19.
- "The Official & Only Authoritative Site Of Cheese Rolling At Coopers Hill In Gloucestershire". Cheese-rolling.co.uk. 2012-01-19. Retrieved 2012-03-19.
- "The Maccabees play the 'best gig' of their lives in London | News". Nme.Com. 2009-10-04. Retrieved 2012-03-19.
- Gittins, Ian (5 October 2009). "The Maccabees". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 25 May 2010.
- [dead link]
- "Maccabees, Bombay Bicycle Club, Big Pink, Drums for Shockwaves NME Awards Tour | News". Nme.Com. 2009-11-09. Retrieved 2012-03-19.
- "The Maccabees Blog – "Given to the Wild" Released 9th January". Themaccabees.tumblr.com. 1994-03-01. Retrieved 2012-03-19.
- "The Maccabees – Pelican (Official Audio)". YouTube. 2011-11-15. Retrieved 2012-03-19.
- vermas. "Given to the Wild Reviews, Ratings, Credits, and More at Metacritic". Metacritic.com. Retrieved 2012-03-19.
- "Radio 1 – Chart – The Official UK Top 40 Albums Chart". BBC. 2007-02-24. Retrieved 2012-03-19.
- "The Maccabees outline plan to release fourth album in early 2014 | News". Nme.Com. 2013-08-14. Retrieved 2014-06-27.
- "The Maccabees reveal slow progress being made on new album | News". Nme.Com. 2014-01-16. Retrieved 2014-06-27.
- Official website
- The Maccabees Interview What's On Wales
- The Maccabees Interview with dailymusicguide.com