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The Futureheads come to Nottingham on Thursday 12th April..... tickets from
In just over eleven years, the band has established themselves as one of Britain’s most thrilling and durable guitar bands. They’ve made four albums – the explosive, barbed The Futureheads; the elegantly miserable News And Tributes; the re-energised, celebratory This Is Not The World and the expansive, troubled The Chaos – that make for a varied but unified back catalogue.
They’ve played hundreds of shows where their taut energy and barely-controlled fury blends with the natural audience rapport of Good Men, and makes sweaty, pogoing punters into FFF’s (Futureheads Fans Forever, of course).
So The Futureheads have earned the right to do anything they like. As long as they don’t, you know, throw out all their instruments. Make a record with, like, no instruments at all. Can you imagine? That would be stupid.
The Futureheads have made a record with no instruments at all. It is called Rant, and it is strictly a cappella. Ross Millard explains: "We’ve always been a four-part harmony group; it’s been a massive part of the genetics of this band."
The eureka moment came straight after a radio show, as Barry explains: "A couple of years ago we did an a cappella version of a Kelis song called Acapella for the Radio 1 Live Lounge. And it was such a buzz to perform live on the radio just with four voices. There’s nothing to hide behind."
Rant also contains a cappella arrangements of four classics from the Futureheads’ back catalogue. Barry explains the choices: "We did Thursday because it immediately came to mind. It’s quite an orchestral, symphonic song so I knew it would work a cappella. And I think the lament side of Thursday is quite lovely. Robot is one of our classic songs and the arrangement creates this beautiful, polyphonic, constantly moving piece of music. Man Ray we chose because it’s one of our most berserk songs. The human voice is so expressive and you can create some amazing chords and rhythms. We chose songs that lent themselves to that."
And then there’s the three stunning versions of pop classics. The Kelis tune picked itself after the Live Lounge performance and there's also Black Eyed Peas and Sparks covers.
"A Futureheads fan who doesn’t get Rant is not a Futureheads fan. This version of The Futureheads has always been there. We’re bringing to the fore what we’re really about: a unification, which is in the balance between our voices and our personalities. Just because this is an a cappella album doesn’t mean to say that the songs are slow or passive. They’re still in-your-face, slightly mad, aggressive. They’re still The Futureheads."