At long last, Factory Floor will be releasing their highly anticipated debut album, simply titled Factory Floor. OutSeptember 10th on New York's DFA Records, the record is a vivid snapshot of a progressive band, smashing through yet another ceiling. It's the first album-length statement from the band, which earned a powerful reputation on the strength of the "Fall Back" and "Two Different Ways" for DFA - not to mention their early releases for Optimo Music and Blast First Petite. Leading up to the release of Factory Floor, the band will be playing select European festival dates this summer. A full list of shows can be found below.
Produced and recorded by the band in their North London warehouse space on a vintage mixing desk originally used by Dave Stewart three decades ago to record all of the Eurythmics' early hits, Factory Floor album is a visceral trip through the band's repertoire. The record opens with "Turn It Up," the band's most minimal track to date. The band is reduced to the core trio of elements on the track: mass, velocity and momentum - mixed in astonishing detail by Timothy "Q" Wiles (VCMG, Afrika Bambaataa). "Here Again" is almost (but not quite) their pop song. Gabe calls it their "Ibiza track," while Nik claims she was channelling Michael Jackson when she wrote it. It's hard to tell who has tongue planted firmer in cheek, but what the track does contain is cascading arpeggios, counterbalanced by bubbly synth melody lines, and plaintive vocals.
Factory Floor also contains the definitive version of "Two Different Ways", followed by the muscular and sleek "Fall Back." "How You Say" finds the band channelling New York's dance underground. "Work Out" is anything but, despite the desultory title, it is in fact sinister street sound electro. The album closes out with "Breathe In," a funkified acid disco classic.
Factory Floor in its current, fully formed incarnation got together in late 2009 when guitarist/vocalist Nik Colk Void joined the dark-hearted, 21st Century rhythm section of drummer Gabe Gurnsey and synth player Dominic Butler. Within months their astonishing gigs had earned them a devoted audience in the UK. The trio figured that putting a demo in the post marked simply, "Stephen Morris: Macclesfield", would be a good way to contact the Joy Division/New Order drummer. That it arrived at his house was surprising; his enthusiastic response to what he heard, less so.
"I listened to the tracks "Lying" and "Wooden Box" and thought they were brilliant . . . In the tracks I could hear something which reminded me of the spirit of New Order in the early days . . . They were raw, chaotic, fantastic and different - everything I've ever liked in a band." Not long afterwards they worked with Chris Carter from Throbbing Gristle and he was so impressed with them that he ended up joining their ranks for a number of international festival shows in 2011.
In the two years after the trio formed they released a number of EPs and 12"s on labels such as Blast First Petite and Optimo while all the time their live sound was shifting away from an all-out noise assault into a much more spacious and confident exploration of techno, minimal, acid and post-industrial rhythms and textures.
Perhaps the most unlikely aspect of the band's rise to notoriety has been their versatility. They produce a sound, that even their most ardent of fans describe as punishing, yet they seem equally at home playing raves, alternative festivals, art galleries, cinemas, nightclubs and rock shows; on top of that they're as much at home collaborating with members of Throbbing Gristle and New Order (not to mention Richard H Kirk of Cabaret Voltaire, Simon Fisher Turner and Peter Gordon) as they are with contemporary artists such as Haroon Mirza and Hannah Sawtell.
21 July - Lovebox Festival, UK
8 August - Way Out West, Sweden
10 August - Flow Festival, Finland
16 August - Pukkelpop, Belgium
17 August - Lowlands Festival, Netherlands
31 August - Electric Picnic, Ireland
11 Sept - Unknown Festival, Croatia
'House' star Laurie received star number 2,593 on the Hollywood Walk of Fame this week.