The Main Stage Saturday
In an era where a majority of musicians seem to view writing good songs as low down the list of attributes required for a successful career, Canterbury quartet Moose Blood are that rarest of things: a band who let the songs do the talking. Bursting onto the scene in 2012, they solidified themselves as one of the UK’s hottest exports across two albums (2014’s debut full-length ‘I’ll Keep You In Mind, From Time To Time’ and 2016’s ‘Blush’) which took the best of American mid-west emo and updated it with a quintessentially Brit-ish twist. The latter of those two records proved to be a breakout success, crashing the UK top 10 and propelling the band onto the main stages of Reading and Leeds Festival and Lollapalooza as well sold out shows at L.A’s legendary Troubadour, New York’s Bowery Ballroom and London’s KOKO –to say nothing of the Kerrang! and Alternative Press Music Awards nominations they’ve picked upon the way. But while Moose Blood have a track record and undeniable song-writing prowess that would make many of their peers green with envy, they’ve eschewed rock star excess and big-mouthed bravado at every turn: a quiet, focussed group of friends that don’t need to shout to be heard loud and clear. “We’re the people we are,” explains guitarist Mark E. Osborne of their less-than-extravagant de-meanour, “and to try and be another way wouldn’t be honest. I think that’s why people connect with the music we make, because it’s honest and comes from a true place – people can see through you straight away when you’re faking it.” To that end, the band – completed by singer and guitarist Eddy Breweton, bassist Kyle Todd and drummer Lee Munday – holed themselves up in Los Angeles with long time collaborator Beau Burchell to record anticipated third album ‘I Don’t Think I Can Do This Anymore’, an LP which delves into the most complexly emotional territory they’ve ever explored. “We’re incredibly grateful to be in this band,” offers ever self-effacing frontman Brewerton, “but there are some aspects of this journey that have been really hard. Especially being away from home so much, for me it got me to a point where I was questioning if I still wanted to be in Moose Blood at all. I think we all were really, and that’s where the title of the record comes from.” Indeed, the first single to be taken from the record, melancholic ear worm ‘Talk In Your Sleep’ explores relationship breakdown from the perspective of an absent, on the road partner; the vagaries of trying to navigate long-distance love just one of many knotty topics discussed across 11 deftly crafted tracks. “There’s almost a circularity to this album when placed next to our first two,” notes Osborne. “The first is full of songs written by enthusiastic, excited kids who just wanted to get their music out there. ‘Blush’ was more about struggling with some of what came along with that change of life-style and ‘I Don’t Think I Can Do This Anymore ’is really us trying to work through some of what has happened in our lives as a result of doing this band full time.” In short, it is an album about growing up and learning to become a man, about facing tribulations and coming out stronger on the other side, about tackling what ails you head on, no matter how insurmountable it might seem. Even more than that though, itis comprehensively Moose Blood’s most sonically complete and accomplished body of work to date. “We’ve put everything into this album,” continues Osbourne. “We always write like it might be the last album that we ever get to make and we’ve challenged ourselves in every way we could on these songs. ”It certainly shows, with Osborne’s fertile creative partnership with Brewerton embracing depth, texture and personal, yet powerfully universal themes with expert skill. The sound of two songwriters entering their prime. “We want people to take what they need for their lives from this record,” finishes Brewerton in his trademark soft tones. “Making it has felt like a catharsis for us, and it would be great if it can help other people in the same way.” And with an absolutely exceptional clutch of new songs under their belt as well as their most expansive touring schedule to date slated for 2018, taking in the biggest venues they’ve ever tackled, the four piece look set to be helping a lot more fans, old and new, in the very near future.