Release Date: Mar 4, 2016
Record label: Wymeswold Records
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock
Head here to submit your own review of this album. Relentlessly charming as well as technically impressive, A Season in Hull deserves to drag in a whole heap of new fans for The Wave Pictures. Spiritual, lyrical and aesthetic twins of Herman Dune, Wave Pictures exist in the same shag carpet and tea miniverse that reveres simple countrified melodies and consistent release schedules.
Ever since their formation in 2008, The Wave Pictures have always played live in the studio, rather than tracking one instrument at a time, resulting in a back catalogue that sound as if the band is in the room. A Season In Hull manages to amplify this live feel even further. The album is entirely acoustic, percussion is very minimal, and it was all recorded through one microphone in one room with a bunch of their friends around.
Having released something like fourteen studio albums since 2003, while touring almost constantly, The Wave Pictures could hardly be accused of taking it easy. But, after last year’s raucous, Billy Childish-enhanced Great Big Flamingo Burning Moon and 2013’s ragged double City Forgiveness, A Season In Hull definitely takes a simpler approach. At friend and collaborator Darren Hayman’s suggestion, it was recorded in one day at London’s Soup Studios, with the band playing live around a single microphone.
For their last album, 2015’s Great Big Flamingo Burning Moon, the Wave Pictures (born: Leicestershire, live: London) collaborated with punk hero Billy Childish and recorded on vintage analogue equipment. This time around, they’ve gone one step more primitive. Armed with acoustic instruments, the prolific indie trio – fronted by Jonathan Richman acolyte Dave Tattersall – convened in an east London studio and shared one microphone.
So, how did you celebrate your last birthday? Pub, was it? Dinner with friends perhaps? Sigh – how unproductive. You want to take a leaf out of the ever-prolific Dave Tattersall’s book: when his birthday last rolled around, he took the opportunity to gather the rest of The Wave Pictures and record an album start to finish, with everyone playing together live into a single microphone. This lo-fi, devil-may-care air translates well to record, with A Season in Hull capturing and accentuating the band’s characteristic camaraderie and casual, Jonathan Richman-esque charm – not least on the playfully surreal Tropical Fish and the breezy, Modern Lovers-referencing The Coaster in Santa Cruz.