Broads

Visit Norfolk electronic/piano sales pitch

Who they?

A Norwich-based electronic music duo, Mark Jennings and James Ferguson. It’s important that they are from Norfolk, that peculiar, flat county topping England’s rump, because their music is an attempt to get to grips with the ineffable qualities of a place on the way to nowhere other than itself. The lead single from their new album ‘Ollust’ (Norfolk dialect for “always”) features singer/songwriter Milly Hirst and is a mournful piano piece called ‘Happisburgh’, a village that’s gradually being eaten by coastal erosion.

Why Broads?

“It’s a beautiful, frustrating, exciting, forward/backward place to live,” says James Ferguson, “and after almost a quarter of a century making music here it seemed high time to pay tribute to the environment that has shaped our sound and our approach to art over such a long time.” The album features six pieces. There’s ‘Thetford’, which has a juddering glitchy beat set against its breathy atmospheres and may well be the first time the town has been immortalised in music (see also ‘Dereham’). The elegiac ‘Oulton’ is named after a village on the Norfolk Broads, and resounds with church bells. 

Tell us more…

Norwich, Norfolk’s fine city, is represented by ‘Strangers’ and ‘Octagon’. Each piece utilises piano, carefully chosen chords evoking mood, place and landscape. While the electronics invade as an insect intervention (‘Strangers’), textures offset the melodious melancholy and turn it into a lengthy electro-acoustic navigation of noise.

‘Ollust’ is released by Humm

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