Release Date: Oct 21, 2016
Record label: Harvest
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Alternative Pop/Rock
Syd Arthur are not 60s psychedelic revivalists, despite their Barrett-referencing band name. But the Kent band’s music is trippy in the best sense: it takes the listener to unexpected places, using complexity and invention to create a unique experience. Apricity, Syd Arthur’s third album, was recorded in California with producer Jason Falkner, and a slick 70s ambience pervades.
On their third LP in four years, British psych-rock quartet Syd Arthur forge a new path, altering both their personnel and overall approach. For most of its existence, the Canterbury-based group has been a contained element, exploring, rehearsing, and producing its dynamic prog-inspired work from its own homegrown studio, Bramble Hall. Arriving in 2016, Apricity sees not only the departure of longtime drummer Fred Rother, but also the band's first collaboration with an outside producer in California pop maestro Jason Falkner (Jellyfish, TV Eyes).
Apricity is a word you don’t hear every day, perhaps simply because it is used to describe the sun’s warmth in winter; a rarity itself in this country. You may well hear it a little more this winter though — not because of any hopeful weather forecasts, but as the third album from prog-pop foursome Syd Arthur. It captures a comforting feeling that seems to remedy a worry of vocalist Liam Magill’s in “Ode To Summer” from the band’s 2012 debut On And On: “Sunken foot, frozen toe, the rain is pouring / As winter calls, nature shouts / Has summer forsake us?” Indeed, the sun and its heat are important and recurrent tropes in the band’s catalogue of songs, nodding not only to their psychedelic sensibilities but to both looking forward towards growth and progress, as well as backwards for a rosey taste of nostalgia.
Lively fourth album from the Kent combo Whether they like it or not, Syd Arthur will never quite be able to escape the legacy of their forebears on the Canterbury Scene. Soft Machine, Caravan, Hatfield & The North and their ilk have ensured that a certain corner of Kent acts as shorthand for a very English kind of fusion, a malleable interface where prog, jazz, psychedelia and the avant-garde are free to frolic. ADVERTISINGinRead invented by Teads The connection to Syd Arthur, however, is growing ever more tenuous as the band continue to move towards a more mainline pop centre.