Field Music brothers Peter and David Brewis share their ultimate Spotify Playlist.
We’re delighted that Mercury Prize nominated Field Music will be joining us this October to lead a very special five-day music studio residency. We’ve worked with them previously in 2015 when they joined us for a Sing City masterclass. They are regarded as one of British indie’s leading lights, with the Brewis brothers involved in a number of collaborative and solo musical projects to broaden their composition and production palette. From the classically influenced chamber-pop of Frozen by Sight, Peter Brewis’ project with Maximo Park’s Paul Smith, to the synthy new wave of David Brewis’ School of Language, their adaptability and creative drive is what sets them apart as musicians today.
Field Music Spotify Playlist
Fashion – David Bowie
From Hunky Dory in 1971 to Let’s Dance in 1983 Bowie pretty much did the lot, didn’t he? He stretched what a pop song could be and changed the idea of what a pop star could be. This is one of those tunes which is incredibly catchy and quite simple but also really weird, thanks partly to Robert Fripp’s guitar playing. Bowie wasn’t afraid to have collaborators come and add something unique to his records.
Kiss On My List – Daryl Hall and John Oates
Hall and Oates are not a fashionable band but their best records are as good as anything for me. A really good band and some really interesting late 70s/early 80s sounds (drum machines, chorus on everything, room-y drum sounds) topped off with incredible singing. Their backing vocal parts have been a bit of touchstone for us recently.
What Makes You Think You’re The One – Fleetwood Mac
Fleetwood Mac have been lots of different bands over the years. This is the version which was barely a band at all, with Lynsey Buckingham losing his mind a little bit, discovering punk and trying to trash their post-Rumours soft rock legacy.
Runs In The Family – The Roches
The Roches (three sisters from New Jersey) and their wonderful first album seems to be a little bit forgotten. For me, it’s just the right mix of wistful, beautiful and sourly funny. It was also produced by the aforementioned Robert Fripp so a couple of tracks have some amazing, bizarre guitar moments.
If This Room Could Talk – Sly & The Family Stone
Another first album which is a little bit overlooked. Sly didn’t really make a mark on the charts until Dance to the Music the following year but the first album is great – a crossing point for pop, rock, soul, psychedelia and a spot of Zappa-esque satire.
Sat In Your Lap – Kate Bush
Kate is introduced to the Fairlight sampler (by Peter Gabriel) and makes something utterly unique, even by her own standards. This song from The Dreaming paved the way for what she would do with Hounds of Love, which is surely one of the greatest records ever made.
Off Minor – Thelonious Monk
Me and Peter are both big Thelonious Monk fans. Much like everyone else on this list, he managed to make tunes which were pretty odd but also catchy. Most of the jazz greats of the time (and most of the jazz greats since) loved his songs, even if they didn’t get on with him or his playing so he ended up making a few all star records. This one featured both John Coltrane and Coleman Hawkins, who pretty much invented jazz tenor playing back in the 20s. The strangeness of the chords and melody pushed everyone playing with him just that little bit further.
Wolfman – Sandro Perri
Everything so far has been from 1982 or earlier so here’s a song from my favourite album of the last few years. Sandro Perri is a Canadian musician and producer. It’s one of those records where I feel slightly jealous that he’s managed to do so many of the things that I want to do – combining live instruments and electronics, having a very open sounding recording which also sounds quite odd and takes in jazz and musique concrète as well as rocking out and having hummable tunes.
Tomorrow Tomorrow – Eleanor Friedberger
Eleanor is one half of the Fiery Furnaces with her brother Matt but for the last few years she’s mostly been busy with solo records. A couple of years ago she came over to tour the UK and I helped get a band together for her and had a great time learning her songs and going on the road with her and a bunch of my north-east pals. She hadn’t been playing this one but cheekily, because the drum beat reminded me of the first Field Music record, we learnt it and smuggled it into the set.
Millbrook – Rufus Wainwright
My wife has pointed out that I haven’t included anything from the 90s. It’s an odd decade for me because I was either busy playing or discovering older music (or playing Lego). There were a handful of records which jolted me back to the musical present day – things like The Soft Bulletin by The Flaming Lips or Eureka by Jim O’Rourke or Knock Knock by Smog. And Rufus Wainwright’s first album. His records have gradually become more bombastic over the years but this first one is quite delicate as well as being grandiose – sketches and postcards and short stories rather than an attempt at The Great American Novel.