Haiku Salut, the acclaimed trio from the Derbyshire Dales, share ‘Cold To Crack The Stones’, the first taste of their forthcoming third album, ‘There Is No Elsewhere’, due out on 7 September via PRAH Recordings. Breathing colour, joy and widescreen ambition into Haiku Salut’s distinctive re-imagining of dreampop and rural electronica,‘Cold To Crack The Stones’, begins with a manipulation of a NASA recording of pulses emitted by lightning before giving way to the emotive power of Glastonbury Brass. It also provides an uplifting introduction to the album’s theme of solidarity and belonging.
“The idea of togetherness and community inspired us to work and record with a brass band,” explains Sophie Barkerwood. “We took a mid-winter trip to Somerset to record with Glastonbury Brass which was an incredibly humbling experience. To hear our songs being played back at us by championship musicians was something else. There was such a warmth of feeling and hope and community.”
Musically, the track continues Haiku Salut’s exploration of the relationship between organic and electronic, natural and unnatural.
“We like to keep a nearness between the natural and unnatural,” says Sophie. “I think there’s often a dichotomy with recorded music – our brains automatically want to know if it sounds ‘live’ or constructed. I don’t think it needs to be that way. The electronic elements sound processed and glitchy and the physical instruments – brass, accordion, guitar – all lead the emotion and provide the human element, the fallibility. We recorded sounds of the woodland and chopped it all up into wonky rhythms and textures and nestled it all next to the familiar warmth of electric guitar and the triumph of the brass band.”
Haiku Salut consists of multi-instrumentalists Gemma Barkerwood, Sophie Barkerwood, and Louise Croft. Between them, Haiku Salut play accordion, piano, glockenspiel, trumpet, guitar, ukulele, drums, and melodica. Their music also features electronic elements, which they refer to as “loopery and laptopery”. Influenced by the evocative film soundtracks of Yann Tiersen and Benoît Charest, the genre-melting electronica of early Múm, and the impressionistic writing of Haruki Murakami, the band released their debut album ‘Tricolore’ in 2013, to critical acclaim, which was followed in 2015 by the equally acclaimed ‘Etch And Etch Deep’. This year’s release, ‘There Is No Elsewhere’, is Haiku Salut’s first album for PRAH Recordings, the neo-classical and electronica label run by Stephen Bass of Moshi Moshi.
‘Cold To Crack The Stones’ is the first song to be released by Haiku Salut since ‘They Gave Me A Lamp’, their collaboration with Public Service Broadcasting, which featured on the PSB’s top five album, ‘Every Valley’.