Watch the new video for Bibio’s ‘Light Up The Sky’

Bibio - Light Up The SkySpring is blooming with wonderful album releases, and one that we have been listening to over and over again is Bibio‘s seventh album, A Mineral Love. Bibio has recently shared a new single from the album, the marvellous ‘Light Up The Sky’, with a fitting kaleidoscopic video directed by Joe Giacomet. Watch it below.

A Mineral Love is out now via Warp.

Bibio releases new single ‘The Way You Talk’ featuring Gotye

Bibio - The Way You Talk Featuring GotyeWe’re getting excitingly close to the release of Bibio‘s new album A Mineral Love, due out on April 1st through Warp. He had already conquered our ears with ‘Petals’, ‘Feeling’ and ‘Town & Country’, all taken from the upcoming album. Bibio is enticing us again with the wonderful ballad ‘The Way You Talk’, also off A Mineral Love. The track marks his first collaboration, with Gotye guesting on vocals. Here’s what Bibio said about it:

“I first heard Gotye’s music when he approached me to remix what quickly became his hit single ‘Somebody That I Used To Know’. I was unfamiliar with him and his music before hearing that track, but I loved the track on first listen and by the second or third listen I was convinced that ‘Somebody That I Used To Know’ was going to be a big hit, I was absolutely sure of it. There was just something about that track, the hook, the emotion, the lyrics but also his great voice, it all came together in a way that was something new but also something kind of familiar, a winning combination. Gotye himself has a unique voice but it also feels somehow familiar and I think this was one of the reasons why his track touched so many people.

A few years ago I had been playing around with this chord sequence that I came up with when playing my Wurlitzer electric piano. I became quite addicted to the sequence and slowly developed it over time. As it got more fleshed out and more nuanced, I started to hear potential in it as the foundation of a song. The line “But there’s something about the way you talk” just came out one day while I was playing the piano. I played around with the context of that line and added more lyrics bit by bit, omitting some along the way. The emotional nature of the track and the way I played the piano part seemed to lend itself to an 80s ballad type sound, something I have a bit of a soft spot for.

I did several versions of this track and when it became more developed, I started to imagine a different voice on it. Gotye specifically came to mind because that familiarity I talked about earlier felt like a good match for the track, I just imagined his voice working with the vibe of the track. I contacted him and he was keen to get involved, so I sent him the lyrics, instrumental and my vocal demo and he sent back his vocal parts, not just copying my vocals exactly, he added his own thing, his own nuances, which I loved instantly.”

Listen to ‘The Way You Talk’ below.

Listen to Bibio’s new song ‘Town & Country’ off upcoming album A Mineral Love

BibioWith his seventh album nearing release date, Bibio has shared another wonderful and radiant song from A Mineral Love called ‘Town & Country’. Stephen Wilkinson aka Bibio had already teased his forthcoming album with the beautiful ‘Petals’ and the soulful and groovy ‘Feeling‘. Here’s what Bibio said in a statement about the song and his move to the countryside:

“When I lived in North London between 1999-2003 I found my feet as an artist and came up with the name Bibio. It was also by my second year in London that I knew I wanted to be in the countryside, far away from the big city. My dream was always an old country cottage with an outbuilding I could turn into a studio, the cherry on the cake would be to get a drum kit in there. That dream has now come true and my first ever drum kit is featured in this song. I wrote the drum parts but got my good friend Rob Lee to play them as he is an accomplished drummer with solid timing, it also gave me freedom to work on the miking and the overall sound of the drums as he performed. Rob also added nuances and flair that only an experienced drummer could bring to the mix. It’s a song about struggle, endurance, fantasy, longing, acceptance and appreciation. I wanted it to be both uplifting and bittersweet. It’s not necessarily about me, although written from my sympathetic perspective, but I’m sure there will be people out there who will relate to it.”

Listen to ‘Town & Country’ below and grab A Mineral Love when it drops on April 1st through Warp.

Bibio’s seventh album, A Mineral Love, arrives in April

Bibio - A Mineral Love

Bibio teased a new album due out in Spring 2016 with a beautiful new song called ‘Petals’ last November. Now he’s finally letting the cat out of the bag. Comes April 1st, A Mineral Love, his seventh album, will see the light of day via Warp Records. As is usual with his new releases, Stephen Wilkinson aka Bibio wrote a few words about A Mineral Love.

“This album celebrates the sacred and precious struggles of human insecurities through many windows of familiar musical forms. It’s also a celebration of my love of the craft of record making, drawing influences from many sources across all decades from the late sixties to the present. All these referential forms have a twist, some are more full on cocktails.

The album as a whole is an unashamed expression of my fondness of, and need for, variety. The juxtapositions between tracks are well considered and I’m comfortable with them – this is how I enjoy music. This is not a purist record, it is not trying to authentically recreate a specific time or genre but rather use familiar forms as a common language to communicate new ideas and new messages. I want to sing about struggle and tragedy with warmth, sympathy and respect. I want sadness to have bittersweet hope.

The whole album was made from scratch with no samples from other records. I partly want it to sound like sampled records but by crafting every single detail myself and colouring it to have familiar textures that resonates people’s forgotten memories. I enjoy the challenge of writing songs that reference the unique qualities and colours of music from different eras. It’s all guesswork though, I have no real reliable knowledge of why certain records sound the way they do, I taught myself how to play instruments, write music and produce. This album is my personal, filtered take on those forms and qualities. Some tracks are influenced by records I listen to often and some from ghosts of memories of things I heard while growing up, like 70s/80s American TV themes or 90s dance. Sometimes a filtered and tinted memory of a period is a more exciting source of inspiration than close study and mimicry.

I feel this album is built more from those memories and an exposure to music of many styles rather than close analytical study of any particular one. I think that’s why it all sounds like me, regardless of the deliberate references and nods to artists and records of the past. It is after all just a view through my stained-glass telescope.”

Bibio is enticing us even more with ‘Feeling’, the soulful and groovy new single off the album. We are feeling it! Are you?

Bibio teases new album with brand new song ‘Petals’

Bibio - Petals

We’re very glad to hear about the good news surrounding Bibio lately. First, and as we had already mentioned, two of his marvellous albums, 2005’s Fi and 2009’s Ambivalence Avenue, are being reissued on Warp on November 27th.
Now, Bibio is teasing a new album due out in Spring 2016. It seems like a long wait till then but we can already wrap our ears around a beautiful brand new song called ‘Petals’.

Warp to reissue Bibio’s Fi and Ambivalence Avenue

Bibio

Next month Warp will reissue two of Bibio‘s marvellous albums, his 2009 Ambivalence Avenue, and Fi, first released in 2005 via Mush Records. The albums will be available on CD and digital formats, as well as a limited edition vinyl box set, including a CD of outtakes, rarities and live recordings. Both Fi and Ambivalence Avenue mark a shift in Bibio’s career, as he explained:

“The tracks that make up Fi were recorded in several locations spanning 1999 to 2003, the oldest being ‘Cantaloup Carousel’, which was originally recorded in my tiny room in my university halls of residence in Wood Green, North London, recorded with a cheap plastic microphone, a budget sampler and a cassette deck. My approach back then was trying to make layered guitar compositions, inspired by Steve Reich’s ‘Electric Counterpoint’, but the lack of professional recording equipment (or knowhow) led to this lofi sound – a sound which started to feel like a signature and one I started to feel quite excited about, something of my own to build upon. My years at university were exciting years of discovery, I met interesting people and discovered life changing new music. It so happens that a lot of this new music was on Warp records. By 2000, most of the music I listened to was on Warp. It was during the year 2000 that I thought of the name Bibio, still equipped with the same cheap mic, sampler and cassette deck but by then I had a portable MiniDisc recorder, which revolutionised things for me, especially for going out and recording sounds. Around 2001/2002 I made some further musical discoveries that changed my musical path. One was Nick Drake and the other was The Incredible String Band. I had been playing guitar since around the age of 11 (growing up on rock/metal), but this new discovery led to experimenting with fingerpicking and alternate guitar tunings, which opened up new avenues of melodic expression and serendipity, it also got me out of old habits and made playing guitar feel fresh and exciting again. Parallel to this more organic acoustic discovery, I was learning about a text based programming language at university called ‘Super Collider’. I didn’t have my own computer until 2002 so before then I’d stay behind after lectures and experiment with Super Collider, often leaving when the university staff wanted to lock up and kick me out. The synthesizers on Fi, such as ‘Cherry Blossom Road’, ‘I’m Rewinding It…’, ‘Looking Through The Facets Of A Plastic Jewel’ and ‘Teleidophonic Torch’ were all programmed in text based code on a G3 iMac using Super Collider. There was something magical about having a musical/sonic idea and working out how to make it happen in pure text, which often led to serendipitous discoveries. Fi is a special album for me because it still reminds me of those happy days of discovery, where I had very little in the way of equipment or music production knowledge, but somehow managed to find a sound I could call my own. It’s such a great feeling to see this album finally come out on Warp 10 years after its initial release. My younger student self would have been blown away

Ambivalence Avenue marks a milestone in my life and career. In some ways I think of it as another debut album, because it was a debut of a new sound and era and of course marked the start of my life on Warp. My first 3 albums on Mush grew from the lofi signature sound that I first developed during my years in London as a student. When I left London to move back to my home town, Wolverhampton, I set up a new space to record in the spare bedroom of my girlfriend’s parents’ house. I had no idea how long that situation was going to go on for, my future was pretty uncertain at this time. These were more difficult years, having a degree that meant nothing to the world around me, having huge debts I couldn’t imagine ever paying off, being in my mid 20s and not knowing where I was heading in life in a town with little opportunity and virtually nothing in the way of an outlet for experimental music. But one thing that kept me going was making music, even if it could have been seen partly as a distraction from getting a proper job. But I was determined to get somewhere with it, it’s all I ever wanted to do. It was during these post-graduate years that I got signed to Mush and released my first few albums. With the few small lumps of money I made from that, I invested in some more gear, the most important thing being an Akai MPC sampler. I made new musical discoveries during these years – people like MF Doom, Madlib and J Dilla were now getting me more interested in making beats. Alongside that I was getting more and more influenced by 70s brazilian records like Marcos Valle’s ‘Previsão Do Tempo’. My vocabulary of guitar chords had already expanded considerably from previously teaching myself lots of João Gilberto bossa nova songs, which is really where my brazilian love affair started – all these factors started to gravitate and take new forms in what I was recording. I was making more music of more variety during these years and had several side projects on the go. There was the lofi guitar stuff I called Bibio, there was Dilla inspired hip hop I called Duckula, there was 90s french house inspired stuff, there was the more electronic side, there were samba influenced pieces and the more funk/soul side of me coming through. Later on, leading up to my Warp signing, I went through a psychological shift, with a nudge from some friends at the time. This shift involved letting go of the compartmentalising nature of those side projects and merging them under one name – Bibio. As Steve Beckett once said to me “It’s all you”. I think it was 2007 when I recorded the track ‘Ambivalence Avenue’, it was a milestone track for me. It combined the lofi tapey Bibio guitar sound with weightier beat based production, fingerpicking with jazz chords, it had a brazilian influence, a folk influence and a hip hop influence, it was a realisation of an idea in my head trying to come out, it was a combination I had been striving for for a while. Making this track gave me a new confidence and triggered what became the most prolific period of my life so far. Any spare time I had around part time jobs was usually spent in that spare bedroom making music, often 10-12 hours a day with only a break to boil the kettle for tea and make toast. When Steve Beckett heard the track ‘Ambivalence Avenue’, I had his attention. He asked to hear more, so I knuckled down even more after then and the album called Ambivalence Avenue happened. On the memorable date of 08/08/08 I met Steve for lunch in London and that was officially the start of my time with Warp. Ambivalence Avenue ended up being a very varied record, before its release I wasn’t sure that people would dig the jump in styles between tracks. I’d think things like “Can Palm Of Your Wave work on the same album as Fire Ant?” But another voice in my head would say “Why not?” I stuck to my guns, had faith in my ideas and hoped people would hear the continuity, which I think is my personal style irrespective of genre. And now 6 years after its release, after being out of print for several years and being in high demand, it has been reissued on vinyl. The success of Ambivalence Avenue and its positive reception encouraged me to not be afraid to surprise people and explore different styles, and it also reassured me that plenty of other people also dig variety”

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