published: 17 /
Dave Goodwin reflects on Nottingham-based post punks Six by Seven's 2000 second album 'The Closer You Get' which has just been released on vinyl along with their' Peel Sessions' and also on CD a new 'Greatest Hits' compilation
Six by Seven must be Nottingham's biggest secret. The city that has spawned the likes of Torvill & Dean, Jake Bugg, Sue Pollard and the world's oldest football team is also home to one of Britain's best bands. Originally formed in 1992, Six by Seven performed their first show at the Old Angel pub in Nottingham in late 1992. The band released their 1998 debut album,'The Things We Make', after which they began headlining their own shows, as well as touring with Ash, the Manic Street Preachers, the Dandy Warhols, and Placebo. They eventually got their big break whilst playing support slots for Rocket from the Crypt and Girls Against Boys. The name Six by Seven was taken from the research connected with the Hubble Space Telescope. They gained respectable recognition and even made an appearance on Jools Holland's 'Later...' show.
The dark pyschedelic post-punks went on after 'The Things We Make' to release six more albums, the much acclaimed 'The Closer You Get' (2000), 'The Way I Feel Today' (2002), '04' (2004), 'Artists Cannibals Poets Thieves' (2005), 'If Symptoms Persist, Kill Your Doctor' (2007) and 'Love and Peace and Sympathy' (2013). Mainstream success, however, eluded them and they lost their major record deal with Beggars Banquet after '04'. Since 2005 they have broken up and got back together on several occasions in different line-ups centered around vocalist and guitarist Chris Olley and keyboardist James Flower.
In early March they temporarily reformed in their original line-up, which as well as Olley and Flower, consists of Sam Hempton (guitar), Paul Douglas (bass) and Chris Davis (drums). To coincide with this 'The Closer You Get' has also been re-released on double vinyl.
It is on the first disc which also includes eight tracks from the band's 'Peel Sessions 'on the second disc. The package is also backed up by on CD a new 'Greatest Hits' compilation, which is comprised of fan favourites and tracks from most of their albums.
'The Closer You Get' was recorded at The Square Centre in Nottingham with Ric Peet and John Leckie, the latter of whom has also worked with Radiohead and Simple Minds, and was released in 2000 just before they played Glastonbury.
This will appeal to the hoards of Six by Seven fans but, if you haven't heard any of the band's material and are looking for a glimpse with a view to exploring more, this is a great option. And now that 'The Closer You Get' is on the lovely black wax it sounds better than ever.