- Doug Johnstone
- 21 November 2006
King Tut’s, Glasgow, Fri 1 Dec
Brighton has long been an incestuous indie breeding ground, so when news broke of a side-project ‘supergroup’ featuring members of British Sea Power, Electric Soft Parade and Tenderfoot, it came as no surprise.
What was surprising was the way Brakes took off. Their debut album, last year’s Give Blood, was a daftly raw knockabout country-punk thriller, created in five days. It received a fantastic reception and saw the band being invited on tour with the likes of Belle and Sebastian, Editors and, most recently, The Killers. Things got suddenly serious. Playing to 3000 people every night was a long way from the band’s booze-fuelled origins.
‘I was singing these acoustic songs,’ says frontman Eamon Hamilton. ‘And one night Tom and Alex [from Electric Soft Parade] came up after a gig and said I needed a band and they would be my band. It was pretty simple really.’
Simple indeed. And so to Brakes circa 2006. The second album, Beatific Visions, is a more expansive and diverse outing, with riff-tastic rock, heartbreaking country, comedy punk and thrilling pop all jostling for attention. Recorded in Nashville with The White Stripes’ producer, it’s a much more serious album. Not that it was serious to make, mind you.
‘We basically stayed in a college dorm for three weeks and partied,’ says Hamilton. ‘We met a bunch of other musicians and played some gigs, you know, just hung out.’
Fair enough. So no plans to get serious in the near future then? Hamilton just laughs.
‘Not much is planned in Brakes, believe me.’