Currently celebrating their 40th anniversary year, Sheffield-based In The Nursery will release a brand new studio album in late February 2022. Entitled ‘HUMBERSTONE’, the family surname of core group members Klive and Nigel (who are also identical twins), it is a deeply personal record that sees them in reflective mood as a year in which they also turned 60 comes to a close.
“We have always needed a reason to make music, a rationale for its creation and existence,” they state. “As composers, the two of us are conscious of the connection between music and memory. The loss of family is a strong emotion, one that we’ve harnessed to revisit our past. Our antecedents have been a catalyst and a stimulus for this new album and it has been good to reconnect and remember.”
‘Émigré (The Dressmaker)’ opens proceedings, its orchestral post-punk vibe packed with high drama as it depicts the tragic drowning at sea of hundreds of emigrants following the burning of a ship off the Cape of Good Hope in the late 19th Century, including Humberstone family ancestors en route to New Zealand. By way of contrast, it is immediately followed by the gorgeously chilled ‘Ektachrome (The Animator)’, in part an homage to Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass, of which they simply comment “imagine home cinema in the ’70s accompanied by your father’s choice record collection.” It is available as a single now.
Other new material includes ‘Mallards (The Storyteller)’, in which an old tape recording of their mother reading her children a bedtime story can be heard, ‘Underscore (The Apprentice)’, which the twins describe as “a musical ode to the typewriter repairman”, while ‘Suvla Bay (The Cavalryman)’ is based around one of their old synthesizers detuning itself and is accompanied by improvised cello and choir to haunting effect. “This piece was inspired by our great uncle who served with the City of London Yeomanry as part of the Gallipoli campaign in WW1,” they explain.
Recorded at the group’s own Beehive Works studio in Sheffield, each track on ‘HUMBERSTONE’ is prefixed with an ‘H’ number to indicate the order in which ideas came to the twins when writing the album.
1 H21 Émigré (The Dressmaker)
2 H43 Ektachrome (The Animator)
3 H29 Underscore (The Apprentice)
4 H24 Mallards (The Storyteller)
5 H57 Cookham Stone (The Painter)
6 H26 Sulcus (The Ploughman)
7 H31 Redpits (The Gardener)
8 H47 Suvla Bay (The Cavalryman)
9 H58 Centrefire (The Gunsmith)
10 H57b A Room At The End Of The Mind (The Jeweller)