London duo Andy Clutterbuck and James Hatcher aka Honne have officially let their new project no song without you out into the world. That classic Honne sound is still firmly on display but there are a few things that are different about thisone. Hit play on the record and dig into some of the album’s key facts below.
It’s A Mixtape
Honne have had two albums in their career but even though length-wise this one stacks-up, they’ve decided to label it as a mixtape. It’s the first mixtape they have released in their career so far.
It’s Their First Project Since Love Me/Love Me Not
Honne are never ones to leave us hanging too long without new music. This is their first project in two years, following on from their sophomore record Love Me/Love Me Not. That record was a highly collaborative affair featuring the likes of Anna Of The North, Tom Misch, Georgia and more. This one, on the other hand, has not credited features. So far, the duo are averaging a two year gap between record. Their debut Warm On A Cold Night arrived in 2016.
A Third Of It Was Recorded In Quarantine
Honne were thick in the recording process of writing this record when the global pandemic took the reigns. “We were about two-thirds of the way through writing our new mixtape when lockdown struck,” Andy Clutterbuck told L’Officiel, continuing, “I forgot how liberating it was writing with just an acoustic guitar.” There’s even a short song on the record called s o c i a l d i s t a n c i n g which we can only imagine was not in existence before quarantine.
It Has Beach Boys Vibes
Honne have always been transparent with their influences but until now Beach Boys is one they haven’t dropped. This mixtape sees them strip back their sound to the bare minimal and experiment with gentle, melodic harmonies. It’s all about the songwriting at its core which is something that seems to have come from Beach Boys. “There’s lots of bendy acoustic guitar, beach boys-esque harmony and it’s softly psychedelic in places,” Clutterbuck told L’Officiel.
It Features NIKI
Keen fans of the 88Rising label quickly spotted an enticing co-write on the album. Nicole Zefanya who is better known as NIKI contributed to the shortest song on the album iloveyoumorethanicansay. It’s a fleeting appearance but it’s enough to make us wish that we had more of it.
It Features A Few Extra Producers
The boys have kept things pretty internal on no song without you but they have shared production duties with a number of collaborators. Pomo, who has worked with Anderson .Paak and Mac Miller, has a credit on the title track which eventuated during a session in LA. Rodaidh McDonald, known for his work with The xx, Adele and more, pops up on one of the album’s luscious moments lines on our faces. Meanwhile, Nashville production duo TWO FRESH worked on free love.
It’s Stripped Back
Honne have never been maximalists but their sound is noticeable smaller on this album. They have honed in on the core elements of their songwriting and it leads to some of their most accessible music to date. In a press release for the record the duo said, “It’s ok for things to sound a bit rough.”
“Rather than going into the studio and compressing guitars over and over. The more character that you leave in it, the more the listener can dive in.”
Their Lyric Videos Were Illustrated By Holly Warburton
If you’re looking for a visual accompaniment to the album we recommend tapping into the animated lyric videos on YouTube. They were animated by British illustrator Holly Warburton. She’s done a brilliant job capturing the feeling of each song in a series of sweet, melancholic and nostalgic visuals.
Here’s An Acoustic Version Of no song without you
There’s not much more we can say about this one than listen to it to make you feel warm and gooey inside.
They Already Want To Write Another Album
With this project just out, it looks like they’re already looking forward to the next album. “We’re gonna write another album. We can’t get enough,” Clutterbuck told L’Officiel. Good because we can’t either.