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Banjo or Freakout drops new Christmas album for free download

By December 24, 2010No Comments

Banjo or Freakout photo by Robert Bellamy

DOWNLOAD: XA2010 (Banjo Or Freakout Xmas 2010 album)

MP3: “Frosty The Snowman”

MP3: “105”

Banjo or Freakout is Alessio Natalizia, an Italian multi-instrumentalist and producer living in London. This year he has released his second collection of Christmas songs, XA2010, as a free download via BandCamp (free for the first 1,000 downloads). Banjo or Freakout will release its first official full-length album, which is self-titled, on Rare Book Room in the US in Feb. 2011 and via Memphis Industries in the UK.

About The New Single, “105”:

‘105’ is Banjo or Freakout’s first single for Rare Book Room and the first cut from his self-titled debut album, due early 2011.

BoF has been creating waves over the past couple of years with the self-released singles ‘Mr No’, ‘Upside Down’ and ‘Left It Alone,’ as well as mournful, eerily affecting remixes and reworks for bands such as Wild Beasts, Bloc Party, LCD Soundsystem, The Soft Pack, and Bombay Bicycle Club.

Alessio’s own songwriting is as preoccupied with sonic invention as much as with timeless pop sensibilities, and these two new songs are an extension of his beautiful stargazing pop.

‘105’ is a slow burning, trembling love song about everything and nothing, with swirling sound, shimmering layers of harmonic guitars and a dreamy and intimate vocal; one of BoF’s most straightforward pop songs to date, it’s named ‘105’ as it was Alessio’s 105th demo for the album. B-side ‘Dead in the Snow’ is more experimental – atmospheric and loop heavy. Obsessive beats eat into each other as they find a mutual rhythm with a delirious vocal, haunted like a voice lost to the city.

‘105’ was, like the rest of the forthcoming long player, recorded at Rare Book Room Studios in New York with Nicolas Vernhes, known for working with Animal Collective, Deerhunter, Dirty Projectors and Spoon. On the forthcoming BoF album Alessio plays most of the instruments, with Nicolas helping out with some guitar/synth parts and Matt Tong of Bloc Party chipping in on drums on a few songs too.

He’s particularly active online, constantly uploading little gems on his blog which so far have included a whole covers album, a whole Christmas album and lots of other goodies between. Not surprisingly, he’s been dubbed ‘Band Of The Day’ by The Guardian and finds himself a frequent subject on tastemaker sites Pitchfork, Stereogum, and Gorilla vs Bear.

This year has seen not only the completion of Alessio’s debut BoF album but also the release on the influential Kompakt label of his other project, the much-heralded organic electronica group Walls (9/10 NME, 4/5 The Guardian, 4/5 Mojo). BoF (swelled to a three-piece live) will back the release of the ‘105’ single with a run of dates around the UK supporting Gold Panda, preceding a record-release night in London on 7th December at White Heat.

Banjo or Freakout
(Rare Book Room / Memphis Industries)
Street Date: Dec. 7 (US) and Dec. 6 (UK)
Formats: 7″ / digital

01 105
02 Dead In The Snow

Banjo or Freakout
Street Date: Dec. 16, 2010

01. Oh Holy Night
02. Holly Jolly Christmas
03. All I Want For Christmas
04. Frosty The Snowman
05. Christmas Day
06. Santa Claus Is Coming To Town
07. Do You Hear What I Hear
08. Christmas Time Is Here
09. Merry Christmas, Baby
10. White Christmas


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