Black Country, New Road

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Black Country, New Road
The band performing on a stage
Black Country, New Road, 2020.
Background information
OriginLondon, England
Genres
Years active2018–present
Labels
Associated acts
Websiteblackcountrynewroad.com
Members
  • Isaac Wood
  • Tyler Hyde
  • Lewis Evans
  • Georgia Ellery
  • May Kershaw
  • Charlie Wayne
  • Luke Mark

Black Country, New Road (commonly abbreviated to BCNR or BC,NR) are an English rock band formed in London in 2018, consisting of Isaac Wood (vocals, guitar), Tyler Hyde (bass), Lewis Evans (saxophone), Georgia Ellery (violin), May Kershaw (keys), Charlie Wayne (drums) and Luke Mark (guitar). Their sound has been described as experimental rock[1] with the band being compared to 90s acts such as Slint. They released their debut album For the First Time on 5 February 2021.

History[edit]

Wood, Hyde, Evans, Ellery, Kershaw and Wayne, along with Connor Browne and Jonny Pyke, were members of Nervous Conditions; a Cambridge, UK-based band with dual drums and a similar, but more improvised sound, to Black Country, New Road. They formed in 2015 and in 2017 recorded a full-length album, provisionally titled Zak's Anniversary. The album was shelved and remains officially unreleased. Following multiple allegations against Browne, of sexual assault[2] they split in early 2018. The ensemble without Browne (and without the second drums of Pyke) reconvened soon after as Black Country, New Road; then as a six-piece band. They performed several live shows and gained a small level of notoriety in the underground scene in London. Their debut single, "Athen's [sic], France", released on 18 January 2019, and was pressed on a limited run of 250 7-inch singles via Speedy Wunderground.[3]

The band gained its seventh member, Luke Mark, between the release of "Athen's, France" and their second single, "Sunglasses". This second single released on 25 July 2019, via Blank Editions, and had three different 7-inch pressings: the first was limited to 500 copies and had a unique picture assembled onto the cover by the band themselves, the second limited to 250 with the cover art featuring a marching band, and the third with an unknown number of copies and a picture of the band assembling the first pressing. The single gained the attention and acclaim of many critics, including Stereogum.[4]

On 28 October 2020, the band announced their debut album, For the First Time, which was released on 5 February 2021.[5] This announcement was backed by their third single, "Science Fair", which has no physical release. Their fourth single, "Track X", was released on 11 January 2021.[6]

On 12 October 2021, the band announced their second album, Ants from Up There, and released a single, "Chaos Space Marine", with the announcement.[7] The deluxe version of the album will include a widely-bootlegged performance at the Queen Elizabeth Hall on 6 March 2021, where they played For the First Time in full, along with three tracks on Ants from Up There: "Mark's Theme", "Bread Song" and "Basketball Shoes".

On 2 November 2021, the band released a second single, "Bread Song", off of their upcoming album. The track was first debuted on 6 February 2020, as a part of an improvised livestream on Bandcamp, alongside a cover of MGMT's 'Time to Pretend'. On 16 November 2021 the band announced their Never Again EP, which includes the aforementioned MGMT cover as well as new covers of ABBA and Adele.[8] The EP, limited to 1500 vinyl copies, is being sold exclusively by Rough Trade.[9]

Associated acts and aliases[edit]

The band regularly performs with experimental rock group Black Midi, and refer to themselves collectively as Black Midi, New Road. The most recent of these performances was a charity gig for live venue The Windmill, Brixton on 10 December 2020, and was a livestream from The Windmill's Bandcamp page, with entry to the video for £5.[10] Geordie Greep of Black Midi has stated that there will likely be a full album released under this joint moniker: “If there's another band who are really good in the same city, who you also really get on with, there's no reason not to get together and do something proper. It's just making sure you don't do it for the sake of it and you have a solid reason for doing it.”[11]

Ellery has performed and recorded as a member of conservatory folk trio 'Contours' and also in 'Happy Beigel Klezmer Orkester'; a six-piece Klezmer band formed during studies at Guildhall School of Music and Drama. Alongside BC,NR, Georgia is one half of the experimental electronic duo Jockstrap, who currently have 2 EPs under Warp Records.[12] She also collaborated with Jamie xx on a BBC Radio 3 session on 30 May 2020.[13] She made her acting debut in 2019's Bait, which won a BAFTA award for Outstanding Debut by a British Writer, Director or Producer.

Wood has made a collaboration album with James Martin, titled Good Dog vs. Bad Dog, under his alias The Guest.

Evans has performed and recorded as a member of 3-piece experimental ensemble 'Guildhall Military Orchestra'. He also made a self-titled album under the alias Good With Parents and featured on the TRAAMS single "The Greyhound".[14]

Tyler Hyde performs solo as 'Tyler Cryde'. She is the daughter of Underworld's Karl Hyde.

Charlie Wayne was also a drummer of another British band, Ugly.[15]

Members[edit]

  • Isaac Wood – lead vocals, guitar (2018–present)
  • Tyler Hyde – bass guitar, backing vocals (2018–present)
  • Lewis Evans – saxophone (2018–present)
  • Georgia Ellery – violin (2018–present)
  • May Kershaw – keyboards, backing vocals (2018–present)
  • Charlie Wayne – drums (2018–present)
  • Luke Mark – guitar (2019–present)

Touring musicians[edit]

  • Nina Lim – violin (2021; served as substitute for Ellery while she was touring with Jockstrap)

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

List of studio albums, with selected details
Title Details Peak chart positions
UK
[16]
AUS
[17]
For the First Time 4 94
Ants from Up There
  • Scheduled: 4 February 2022[19]
  • Label: Ninja Tune
To be released

Extended plays[edit]

List of extended plays, with selected details
Title Details Sales
Never Again Limited to 1,500 copies

Singles[edit]

List of singles, showing year released and album name
Title Year Album
"Athen's, France" 2019 Speedy Wunderground Year 4
"Sunglasses" Non-album single
"Manchester xx/xx/20" 2020
"Science Fair" For the First Time
"Track X" 2021
"Track X (The Guest)" Non-album single
"Chaos Space Marine"[19] Ants from Up There
"Bread Song"
"Concorde"
"Snow Globes"

References[edit]

  1. ^ Cartledge, Luke (4 February 2021). "Black Country, New Road – 'For The First Time' review: an utterly mesmerising debut". NME. Retrieved 5 February 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  2. ^ "Nervous Conditions split following sexual assault allegations against frontman". thelineofbestfit.com. January 30, 2018. Retrieved December 18, 2020.
  3. ^ "Listen: Black Country, New Road - 'Athens, France'". clashmusic.com. January 18, 2019. Retrieved November 18, 2020.
  4. ^ "Black Country, New Road – "Sunglasses"". stereogum.com. July 25, 2019. Retrieved December 18, 2020.
  5. ^ "Black Country, New Road announce debut album 'For The First Time'". nme.com. October 28, 2020. Retrieved December 18, 2020.
  6. ^ "Black Country, New Road – "Track X"". stereogum.com. January 11, 2021. Retrieved January 11, 2021.
  7. ^ Minsker, Evan (12 October 2021). "Black Country, New Road Announce New Album, Share New Song". Pitchfork. Retrieved 12 October 2021.
  8. ^ a b Kenneally, Cerys (16 November 2021). "Black Country, New Road releasing covers of ABBA, Adele and more on vinyl". The Line of Best Fit. Retrieved 17 November 2021.
  9. ^ "Black Country - New Road - Never Again - 12" - Rough Trade". Retrieved 17 November 2021.
  10. ^ "Black Midi and Black Country, New Road cover Coldplay, Bruce Springsteen and more in livestreamed gig". nme.com. December 11, 2020. Retrieved December 18, 2020.
  11. ^ Daniel Dylan Wray (April 7, 2021). "The Road To The Best Ever: Black Midi Interviewed". The Quietus. Retrieved April 11, 2021.
  12. ^ "Meet Jockstrap, an Uncanny Electro-Pop Duo From the Retro Future". pitchfork.com. April 2, 2020. Retrieved December 18, 2020.
  13. ^ "Listen to Jamie xx and Jockstrap's Georgia Ellery's new quarantine collaboration". nme.com. May 30, 2020. Retrieved December 18, 2020.
  14. ^ "TRAAMS return with their first new music in nearly five years". readdork.com. August 11, 2020. Retrieved January 13, 2021.
  15. ^ "Charlie Wayne's band "Ugly"". gigwise.com. August 20, 2019. Retrieved January 13, 2021.
  16. ^ "Black Country, New Road | full Official Chart History". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 13 February 2021.
  17. ^ "The ARIA Report: Week Commencing 15 February 2021". The ARIA Report. No. 1615. Australian Recording Industry Association. 15 February 2021. p. 6.
  18. ^ Dale, Jessica Dale & Wall, Sam (21 January 2020). "We've Got a Big Year Ahead of Us – These Are the Albums That Will Define 2021". The Music. Retrieved 26 January 2020.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  19. ^ a b Richards, Will (12 October 2021). "Black Country, New Road announce second album 'Ants from Up There' and share 'Chaos Space Marine'". NME. Retrieved 13 October 2021.