Gruff Rhys announces his fifth album, Babelsberg, set for release on Friday 8 June. It’s his first record for Rough Trade since 2007’s classic Candylion. Gruff also shares the first track from the record ‘Frontier Man’, watch the video below!
The album’s ten tracks were initially recorded in early 2016 in a whirlwind three day session that took place before producer Ali Chant’s studio was demolished. The band he gathered for the record were his regular drummer Kliph Scurlock and multi-instrumentalists Stephen Black and Osian Gwynedd. The tracks then hibernated for eighteen months, awaiting orchestral scores by Swansea based composer Stephen McNeff and the incredible work of the 72 piece BBC National Orchestra of Wales.
The result is Gruff’s best record to date – a ten song gazetteer of modern times, each track set to timeless, indelible melody. Amazingly, for a collection of songs written over two years ago, each one seems to pull very sharp focus on the times we’re living in.
Gruff manages to perfectly document our troubled and troubling times with humour, grace and always addictive melody. In a career that’s spanned three decades, two languages, multiple bands, offshoots, collaborations and one boundless imagination, Babelsberg is arguably Gruff’s finest set of songs to date.
Stream / purchase ‘Frontier Man’: https://gruffrhys.lnk.to/frontierman