FLY THE FLAG
The new album from Hardwicke Circus released Friday 9th June
Following their studio debut The Borderland and live prison album At Her Majesty’sPleasure, Fly The Flag is released on Friday 9th June on the band's own label Alternative Facts Records and is Hardwicke Circus at their most urgent, delivering 12 break-neckrecordings like their lives depend on it.
Born out of the competitive and prolific songwriting nature of the Foster brothers, theirsophomore album is a journey into their love of rock ’n’ roll, motown & outright 21st centurypop. Produced by Dave ‘Stiff Records’ Robinson, it features guest appearances from EarlSlick (John Lennon, David Bowie), Snake Davis, Terry Edwards (PJ Harvey), SeamusBeaghan (Iggy Pop, Madness) and the Collected U12s Choir of Cumbria. Whether thesongs are dealing with the acerbic-Van-Morrision-esque ‘Bang My Head’ or the Four Topsinspired unrequited love in ‘The Colour In Everything’, ultimately, this is an album colouredin a musical liberation that makes you want to get up and dance.
Fly The Flag is a testament to the positive power regional identity plays in shaping thecountry’s art & music scenes. Just as Sam Fender or the Arctic Monkeys stay connectedto their sharp tongue local dialect, The Hardwickes (as they are known colloquially) areproudly from Carlisle, the most northern destination in England, and in ‘Our Town’, theyencounter the deprivation many Northern towns are facing and the conflicting nature ofbeing so detached from the rest of the country: "it’s a rough neck, blank cheque, silenthowl, but I call it my town" sings Jonny Foster. ’Night Train to London’ reflects the band’sreluctance to even ‘get out’: "the ungodly hour, platform 4, steam trumpets reach Carlisle",writes drummer Tom Foster. The album artwork by the contemporary British painterHumphrey Ocean is perhaps the clearest indication of their northern roots; the green andblue of Cumbria waving amongst Carlisle's brutalist structure 'the civic centre'.
'It’s Not Over Till It’s Over' deals with the cynical nature of moving up the ladder with anorthern accent: "give me a door cos I like to close them", and lyrically, the record reachesfurther afield in ‘Can You Hear Me Now?’, telling the story of Sadiqi & Dritan - both refugeesin this country - and the Vietnamese families attempting to reach their loved ones who diedin the back of a chiller truck as they sought refuge in the UK.
Already dubbed the ‘hardest working group in the UK’, the recording process of Fly TheFlag will surely qualify Hardwicke Circus as England’s most brittle boned band too: onebroken arm, two keyhole leg surgeries, one van crash, a sawed off thumb, two tribunals,various breakups, undiagnosed mental discrepancies and the creation of their own recordlabel Alternative Facts Records. This dogged determination, this fierce independence is, inessence, the heart of Fly The Flag: Hardwicke Circus jumping the parapet, together awhirlwind of five unswerving minds, charging for the eye of the storm and making theirvoices heard, Flying The Flag for you.Fly The Flag will be available on digital, CD and vinyl formats, and you can pre-order & pre-save by clicking HERE.