Be More Kind is out on 4 May via XtraMile Recordings/Polydor and is wrapped in a huge UK tour.
Fans of Frank Turner got a taste of his new material last month with the first track 1933 and this is followed this week by new track (and title track) Be More Kind. Of the track, Frank says, “Be More Kind”, the song, is at the heart of the album, both lyrically and musically; when I finished it I could see the rest of the album coming together around it.’’
Turner was halfway through writing a very different sort of album, a concept record about women from the historical record who had been ignored, when he was reading a collection of Clive James’ poetry and one particular line compelled him to re-think his direction.
It was from a poem called Leçons Des Ténèbres: “I should have been more kind. It is my fate. To find this out, but find it out too late.” “It devastated me the first time I read it,” he says. “A lot of older, wiser people tend to say things like that, that the things that come out in the wash at the end of a human life are the way you treated the people around you. In the modern world, that’s a lesson that all of us, myself included could do to learn.”
After the stripped-down, live-sounding Positive Songs…, Turner wanted to try a new approach for the record. Originally, he contacted Jenkins and Block at their Niles City Sound studio in Fort Worth, Texas with the idea of recording a white soul album in the vein of Dexys Midnight Runners.
He found they were equally enthusiastic when he changed his mind and decided he wanted to record a more rock-led album with tints of electronic-pop. “I have an obscure corner of my music taste where I’m into glitch electronic music and Warp Records,” says Turner. “It’s not an electronic record but I got into arpeggiator synths.” Positive Songs… was cut in nine, intense days whereas Be More Kind was made over a period of seven months, giving Turner the opportunity to turn songs on their head, try different versions and shake up the dynamics within his band.
Frank Turner is headed out on tour to play his new tracks live in the UK:
13 April – Academy, Manchester
20 April – The Garage, Aberdeen
21 April – Liquid Room, Edinburgh
22 April – O2 Academy, Newcastle
24 April – O2 Academy, Sheffield
25 April – O2 Academy, Liverpool
27 April – O2 Academy, Bristol
28 April – Great Hall, Exeter Uni
30 April – Corn Exchange, Cambridge
1 May – Guildhall, Southampton
2 May – Cliffs Pavilion, Southend
4 May – O2 Academy, Leicester
5 May – O2 Academy, Oxford
8 May – City Hall, Hull
9 May – UEA, Norwich