Friday 3 February 2023

LISTEN: Benedict Benjamin - 'Furlough Blues'

What a time to be alive, pals. As if a new Sivu track and Stornoway announcing a gig and a festival appearance wasn't enough nostalgia for my university days, today sees another artist return that I'm pretty excited about. I caught Benedict Benjamin playing gorgeous sets at a couple of Sofar Sounds shows while I was living in Oxford, and most recently opening up for Christof van der Ven in London a few years back. His record Night Songs (2016) soundtracked much of my studies, while second album Truant (2019) arrived exactly when I needed it - I adore both. I'm delighted, naturally, to share that Ben is back with a new album for me to obsess over (which I'm diving into as I type - so far, so good). Tunnel is due for release on 9th June. 

First track Furlough Blues does exactly what it says on the tin... it's a relatable ode to those early days of lockdown and the anxieties that it brought for many of us. On the track, Ben shares "I don't know if anyone wants to hear music about that time, I feel like people are trying to move on from it culturally, but it was too big and intense a thing for me not to write about. And writing about it was what helped me get through it." He reflects on "the overwhelming amount of time that was stretching out in front of everyone with no indication of when or if things were gonna go back to normal. That feeling of being adrift. The song was written in that headspace."  

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