Tuesday 11 September 2012

Public Service Broadcasting - Everest

If you had told me at the start of the year that my favourite new artist of 2012 would be a duo who mix electronica and rock with vocals sampled from old public information films, I would no doubt have laughed in your face. Then Public Service Broadcasting happened.

At the start of the year, the London duo released "ROYGBIV", which was based around samples of films heralding the beginning of colour TV. They followed it up in May with the fantastic 'War Room E.P", which took its inspiration from WWII-era films. The E.P was a resounding success for the group. The 12" version of the EP sold out before its official release date, which led to a re-printed CD version following in August. It even made the UK indie chart, with two of the songs taken from it, "Spitfire" and "London Can Take It", receiving extensive airplay on 6music. Excellent stuff for a group who still self-release their material.

Now, Public Service Broadcasting are gearing up to release their next single. Not one to abandon their winning formula, their latest song, "Everest", is based around samples taken from The Conquest of Everest, a film which follows the success of Edmund Hillary and Tenzig Norgay's successful climb of Mount Everest in 1953. In comparison with the sound of  "The War Room", whose harsh beats reflected the reality of WWII life, "Everest" is a much dreamier affair, in reflection of the pinnacle of human achievement that was achieved back in 1953 by those brave mountaineers. It's a euphoric song, and one that should remind us that nothing is impossible.

Back in the 1920s, mountaineer George Mallory was asked by an interviewer why he wanted to climb Mount Everest. He is reported to have gruffly replied "because it's there." Perhaps that is the reason why Public Service Broadcasting choose to take samples from old films to meld with their electronica masterpieces - because they are there, and because we still have so much to learn from them.

"Everest" will be released on November 12th to coincide with a UK-wide tour.

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