Photo by Nedda Afsar
London quartet The Boxer Rebellion has a knack for writing album after album of jaw dropping beauty, and its fifth is no exception. Now in their fifteenth year as a band, Ocean By Ocean is quite simply The Boxer Rebellion’s most complete record to date, and the band today announced its release for Friday, April 29 as well as a brand new album track titled “Keep Me Close.”
A deeply personal track to lead singer Nathan Nicholson, “Keep Me Close” is “about opening yourself up – about the leap you take when you give yourself over, unwaveringly, to someone else. It’s about letting yourself be judged, about being open to change to be closer to someone.” “Keep Me Close” is now available with album pre-orders immediately (iTunes, CD, LP) and can be streamed below.
Three years since the band’s fourth album, Promises, and with the addition of new guitarist Andrew Smith,Ocean By Ocean presents itself as an accomplished, beautifully orchestrated and impeccably freighted album, with a depth of emotion to every one of the 10 songs that lift each towards the hymnal. Produced by the band in conjunction with the notable Billy Bush (Garbage, Jake Bugg, Against Me!), the sound is brooding and ruminative, with singer Nathan Nicholson’s rising falsetto casting an eerie lava lamp glow on songs that sound good before midnight, and even better afterwards.
Ocean By Ocean is a transcendent record infused as much with darkness as it is light. There is brooding melancholy here that often translates into an emotional sucker punch. The first single release from the album will be “Big Ideas,” a track that concerns missed opportunities according to Nicholson. “It’s about meeting someone special but at the wrong time in your life. You feel lucky to have met them but also, because of the bad timing, like you have the very worst kind of luck.”
The Boxer Rebellion is one of those rare bands who stay the course. Rarer still are the ones who get better over the years until quietly, astutely, they deliver their classic. The Boxer Rebellion are one of those bands, and Ocean By Ocean is one of those records.
The Boxer Rebellion will be returning to North America for a run of live appearances this Spring. Tour dates to be announced soon.
Ocean By Ocean Track Listing:
02. Big Ideas
03. Let’s Disappear
04. Pull Yourself Together
06. Keep Me Close
08. The Fog I Was Lost In
09. You Can Love Me
10. Let It Go