Ben Howard | New Album | iTunes Festival | Live Look At The Album

Right now… it’s 11:56pm and I’m listening to BBC 1 Live Lounge with Ben Howard who is in studio and he is about to play his entire album live on the radio.

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It’s been such a long time with waiting for this album to come out.  Ben is actually my fave artist.  His music to me is in levels.  When I discovered him on itunes on November 18th, 2011.. I only downloaded 4 songs.  (Keep Your Head Up, The Fear, Only Love and and Further Away).  These songs were at a time in my life that I really needed them.  It was 18 days after my wife and partner for 23 years wanted to leave and be on her own.  In 2012… I ventured into a little more Ben and downloaded a couple more songs.  September 25th of 2012 and almost a full year with only 4 Ben Howard songs, I downloaded Old Pine, Everything, Gracious and Promise.  These songs blew me away.  They were soft and sweet and made me think of new things.

be1-ben howard track list

Then the handle fell off the kettle in December of 2012 and I downloaded every fucking song I could find.  Completed the album.  Watched all the footage I could find on YouTube and my tumblr exploded with love for Ben & India.  My goodness India.  Having the chance to watch him twice in concert here in Toronto has been sweet.  I’m still waiting for him to return.  He just played this past summer at Western Canada at a Folk Fest.

 

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This new is just about to be performed live on BBC Radio 1 where he is going to play the entire album track by track.  Something he has not done before.  I’m very interested.  Honestly… I was not feeling good about this album.  I was hearing how Ben was worried that this album was deep and cold and in a way…. I was expecting another album like Every Kingdom with playful riffs on the guitar and warm sweet sounds of Ben & India smiling at each other as they played.

tumblr_ncczjzWqUy1sz57yvo2_r2_500But one thing that was interesting is how Ben’s music has changed and I fell in love with the colder and deeper songs like Esmerelda, Oats In The Water, Burgh Island and To Be Alone.

The Burgh Island EP

Ok… let’s get to why this blog post is here.  The reason I got off the couch after falling asleep and waking up after reading the reaction on Tumblr to tonight’s BBC 1 Live having Ben and the gang in the studio to play the entire album track by track.

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After some tracks has been released on his fourth album “I Forget Where We Were”… I started to get excited.  It started with “End Of The Affair” and followed by “I Forget Where We Were” and now “Conrad”.  I’m excited as shit.

Just for tonight… let’s rate them from 1 to 3.  1 will be something that I’m not digging yet.  2 is in the middle and I enjoy.  2A will be something that I enjoy and I want to listen to more and appreciate it.  2B will be something that I’m excited about and will be more on repeat.  3 is hitting me inside and I love for the mood it brings me.

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Small Things: (2A/3)  I’m digging the delayed guitar on this opening track.  This song comes in at 5:43 in length.  Hello India!  It’s 12:34am now and I don’t know if I will be able to get all the lyrics and comprehend it.  I’m also typing this as the album is playing.  Love the quick little jabs of guitar.  This is sort of a “Lost In Transition” song that I would find on my mixtape and would be perfect for a nice walk outside alone.  Last night, I ripped the audio from YouTube of him playing Small Things and I like the acoustic version that I listened to this morning on my way to work and home again.  You can listen to Ben play “Small Things” live on the radio here:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AwfU5UuP5K8

Rivers In Your Mouth: (2A/3) Love the opening 10 seconds.  Drums… then… wait for it… wait for it….  sweet goodness.  A quicker pace on the second track.  12:45am.  India is with him again for this one.  I wish the lyrics were online for these.  So far… 2 songs I would like playing in my earbuds and I would not want to “skip” them.  ooooowww  Ben is raising his voice.  With more tracks to come… I’m leaving this at 2A on my scale… but it could be ranked a B when the dust settles.  5:11 in length.

I Forget Where We Were: (3/3) This song is fucking awesome.  I’ve been listening to this song for about 3 weeks now.  Yes… “Hello Love…”  This song fucks with me inside.  Three songs in… and I’m wondering if this will be my top fave on the album.  Jesus… the words in this song.  India, your playing with me.  4:41 in length.  Watch and listen to this song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DA5aJFZ6GU4

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Ben is cute.  It’s hitting him that he is going to play track by track the whole album.  Would love to know what is going through his mind as he wonders what the reaction to his new songs from so many fans that have begged for a year and asked the band when new material is going to come out. 

In Dreams: (2A/3) Oh shit.  Interesting.  3:33 in length.  This is another song… I’ve listened to this morning but acoustic.  It has the “old Ben” feel with the clever lyrics and guitar.  This song is building.  India is playing the “Big Thing”  😉  This song will grow on me.  You can listen to the acoustic version here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nqeYrWaynyc

She Treats Me Well:  (3/3)  Finger picking.  Love the opening.  12:59am.  Sweet India again.  I think with where I am in my life… this song is deeper inside me.  India plays along with him very well on this song and this is the first song.  Simple classic Ben on the guitar.  Playful Ben laughing at playing along with India.  Must be so nice for them to play new music and feel like a “little kid” playing something new and fun.  5:17 in length.

Ben’s having a little drink and gathering his thoughts before starting the next track.

Time Is Dancing:  (2B and maybe a 3/3)  It’s a hidden sleeper and will grow on me.  6:49 in length for this one.  So far as this one starts… I’m digging the new album.  Happy so far.  Different feel on the guitar for this one.  India again is singing along with him word for word.  1:09am.  This song has an underlying beat that is steady and it’s a song that makes you think about your life and where you are on this earth.

Evergreen: (2A/3)  This one starts off slow and India is right with him on this one.  It’s a slower track and something you would find on my “Lost In Transition” mix.  4:04 in length for this track.  So happy with this album so far.  I’m not scared anymore.  😉

 

End Of The Affair:  (3/3)  1:16am and Ben and the band is tuning their instruments.  Love his shyness.  I hope someone adds this feed to YouTube so I can rip this quick and get it on the ipod. End Of The Affair is starting and I’ve also had this one on the iPod for about 3 weeks.  It’s a little “Esmerelda” without the anger that I feel inside.  This song is two parts.  The first part is quiet and then it gets rough and deep.  1:22am and shits going to get real in this song now that the second part is starting.  “Your Ex is an idiot” and makes me shake my head.

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Conrad: (3/3) Sweets listened to this song first before me.  Love how this song opens up.  Sweet song and has an “Old Pine” feeling for me.  1:28am and I’m happy.  This song goes for 6:08 in length.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OYR6A47DK-Q  This song might be my fave and would beat out the title track.  Just because it makes me happy and it’s a perfect song for the morning.  1:33am and that song rocked.

All Is Now Harmed:  (2A/3)  Drums 😉  Light song and it just started.  This one will come in at 5:02 in length.  India is right with him on this one.  This is the final track on the album.

 

His new album comes out on Oct 20th of this year.  I’m going to buy this one just outright on iTunes.  Tomorrow night… he will play the iTunes Festival… which I’m excited as shit to watch.  I don’t know when I can command the TV and hook up the laptop and play it loud.  I will do that the first opportunity I can.  No idea what he will play.  I’m sure he will play some old faves from Every Kingdom mixed in with tracks from the new album.  Can’t wait for tomorrow night on the big TV or on my laptop with earbuds if that can’t happen for a while.  It’s a couple of minutes before 2am.  I should get to bed.  I’m up in 5 hours.  😉

Night world.  Be kind to us all.

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