Sheffield-based In The Nursery have released their new album, Humberstone, today. Their first studio record since 2017, it is also the surname of core group duo Klive and Nigel (who are identical twins).
A deeply personal album, it sees them in reflective mood. Recorded during 2021, a year in which they turned sixty, they explain that “we have always needed a reason to make music, a rationale for its creation and existence. As composers, the two of us are conscious of the connection between music and memory. The loss of family is a strong emotion, one that we’ve harnessed to re-visit our past. Our antecedents have been a catalyst and a stimulus for this new album – it has been good to re-connect and remember.”
Humberstone includes two previously released and contrasting singles. The blissed-out Ektachrome (The Animator) is titled after their filmmaker father and is in part a homage to Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass but also redolent of classic John Barry film scores and orchestral French pop of the early 1970s. Its follow-up, Émigré (The Dressmaker), has an orchestral post-punk vibe full of drama as it depicts a real-life tragedy that involved late 19th Century ancestors of the Humberstone family.
Other album songs include Mallards (The Storyteller), featuring a tape recording of their mother as she reads her children a bedtime story, and Suvla Bay (The Cavalryman), which is based around one of ITN‘s synthesizers detuning itself and is accompanied by improvised cello and choir to haunting effect. “This piece was inspired by our great uncle who served with the City of London Yeomanry as part of the Gallipoli campaign in WW1,” they add.
Recorded at ITN‘s own Beehive Works studio in Sheffield, each track on Humberstone is prefixed with an ‘H’ number to indicate the order in which ideas came to them when writing the album.
- H21 Émigré (The Dressmaker)
- H43 Ektachrome (The Animator)
- H29 Underscore (The Apprentice)
- H24 Mallards (The Storyteller)
- H57 Cookham Stone (The Painter)
- H26 Sulcus (The Ploughman)
- H31 Redpits (The Gardener)
- H47 Suvla Bay (The Cavalryman)
- H58 Centrefire (The Gunsmith)
- H57b A Room At The End Of The Mind (The Jeweller)
IN THE NURSERY
In The Nursery is a Sheffield-based group centred around the nucleus of identical twin brothers Klive and Nigel Humberstone. Formed in 1981, their career has been a quest to progress and experiment while remaining true to their original vision. Their sublime, cinematic music blends electronica, classical arrangements, orchestral percussion and soundscapes that evoke a timeless quality.
ITN have released over 25 albums since 1981 that have consolidated their distinctive sound but also taken on board contemporary influences. Their music has been used on numerous film soundtracks and trailers that include Game Of Thrones, Gran Torino, Beowulf, The Aviator, Interview With A Vampire, Along Came A Spider, The Rainmaker, plus the TV series La Femme Nikita.
In parallel to regular studio output, ITN have also developed their Optical Music Series, recording new scores for classic silent films such as The Cabinet Of Dr Caligari, Asphalt, Man With A Movie Camera, Hindle Wakes, A Page Of Madness, Electric Edwardians, The Passion Of Joan Of Arc, The Fall Of The House Of Usher and The Seashell And The Clergyman. They have performed these scores live at film festivals around the world.
Their last studio album, 1961, took its title from the year in which the twins were born and drew inspiration from historic, literary and personal connections to that year. It was released in 2017.
IN THE NURSERY online: