The Wedding Present present their track ‘Broken Bow’ not long after premiering ‘Kill Devil Hills‘. These are among the more animated bustling tracks from their new album Going, Going , referencing the interplay between alienation, distance and freedom for the first track and a sensual predatory encounter in the second. This UK indie cult band’s widely anticipated ninth studio album gets its vinyl release on December 2nd in North America via Happy Happy Birthday To Me Records (HHBTM). The album retells the story of a road trip across the USA, revealed across a collection of twenty linked songs, each with an accompanying short film.
‘Going, Going ’ is also the first double album in The Wedding Presents long glorious career. It opens with four haunting instrumentals, as if David Gedge has been stunned into silence and is slowly working up the courage to speak, like when your loved one asks you whats wrong and all you can manage to do is slowly shake your head. Finally, he collects himself and explodes into Two Bridges, and even then hes only able to leave a voicemail messagehe probably made sure to call when he knew she couldnt answer.
Formed in 1985, The Wedding Present are one of the UKs most longstanding and much-loved indie bands with eighteen UK Top 40 hit singles to their name. The Falls Mark E. Smith, in his northern-ness, his cantankerousness, is one of the few peers who can match David Gedges longevity.
‘Going, Going ’ was recorded at Studios La Fabrique in the south of France and Parr Street Studios in Liverpool with multiple Grammy award winning producer Andrew Scheps (Red Hot Chili Peppers, Black Sabbath, Adele).
The album tells the story of a road trip across the USor more accurately, the accumulation of thoughts collected during a road tripover the course of 20 songs, each with its own accompanying short film. The music is literally cinematic, in many cases written while looking at photographs & film recorded during the journey.
Road trips allow the mind to drift. They give you time to think. AndGoing, Going is more contemplative, more spiritual than anything theyve ever done. If The Wedding Present have always been heard as a hyperactive frenzy, a torrent of emotion, Going, Going is where they take a moment to reflect. And what theyve ended up finding is even more terrifying. Adolescent dread is intense, but its the dread that comes w/middle-age that hits the deepestthe knowledge that monsters are real, and death isnt a tragedythat its as natural as the weather and every bit as inevitable.
The lyrics are still as incisive (incisive as in creating an incision) as ever. Gedge points fingers everywhereat himself & everyone in the room.Going, Going is an album that sounds like it was made under great psychological distress, like if these songs didnt get written then there might never be any more songs ever. The albums theme gets clearly laid-out on Fordland. Im crossing time zones like its going out of style / Pretending that I know / Exactly what Im doing with my life, meanwhile / Im terrified of tomorrow.
The album propels from one bittersweet rush to another. Theres the hyperactive Secretary, the brutal irony in the chorus of KIll Devil Hillsas our protagonist, after nearly half an album of equivocations & self-doubt, describes himself as a man who knows what he wants.
It all builds to the epic finale of Santa Monica, from Maine all the way to California, from emotional desolation to a cautiously optimistic ending. As the singing ends and the guitars swell, swept away on several minutes of instrumental calm, it feels as if weve come full-circle, only now the wordlessness is the product of satisfaction. The album title hints that this could be the end, and if so, what a lovely way to say goodbye.
Released in the UK two months ago on Scopitones, HHBTM is handling the US release, which comes out this November. The UK press is raving, and soon so wont we all.
TOUR DATES APRIL 2017
14 : Washington, DC – Rock And Roll Hotel
15 : Brooklyn, NY – Bell House
16 : Boston, MA – Great Scott
17 : Montreal, QC – Bar Le Ritz PDB
19 : Toronto, ON – Horseshoe Tavern
20 : Cleveland, OH – Grog Shop
21 : Chicago, IL – Lincoln Hall
22 : Minneapolis, MN – Turf Club
25 : Seattle, WA – Crocodile
26 : Vancouver, BC – Biltmore Cabaret
28 : San Francisco, CA – Independent
29 : Los Angeles, CA – Echo
30 : San Diego, CA – Casbah