The Week That Was

Bio The Week That Was

The Week That Was, written and recorded in late 2007 at Field Music’s 8 Studio in Sunderland, emerged from an imagined crime thriller dreamt up by Peter Brewis and inspired by Paul Auster’s labyrinthine storytelling. Peter started writing the songs as if they were moments, instances of perspectives within this story. The story was left to fall away, leaving a puzzle of musical snapshots. The songs are the evidence in this particular mystery and the victims, perpetrators and onlookers raise questions with concerns familiar to us all. How do we deal with the fragments of information we receive through the television, radio, the internet? How do we balance the distrust we feel for mass media with our dependence on it? How does this relationship influence our hopes and actions in our real lives? And finally, what would happen if we decided not to deal with it anymore and switched off the information flow by throwing away our TVs, radios and newspapers? The anger, confusion and sorrow details the week of Peter’s own enforced switch off. This may be about as conceptual as Peter will ever get.

Musically the record is an expansive tribute, paying direct (and indirect) homage to the wildly ambitious Linn Drum and Fairlight experiments of Kate Bush, Peter Gabriel and Tin Drum-era Japan. This fused with the typically detailed arrangements and sense of drama makes The Week That Was a brain-shattering, 32 minute epic, straying further outside the conventions of most indie-guitar music.

The record features contributions from Peter’s Field Music colleagues, Andrew Moore and David Brewis, along with Pete Gofton on vibraphone, singing by Jennie Redmond, John Beattie on cornet and Laura Cullen on flute, as well as percussive and vocal duties from This Ain’t Vegas’ Jordan Hill and Richard Amundsen. The strings were played by Emma Fisk and Peter Richardson (veterans of previous Field Music albums) and Pauline Brandon. The success of the album, however, pivots around Peter’s deftness and ingenuity as producer, engineer, writer, instrumentalist and singer – it’s hard to think of even a handful of artists who would attempt to harness such a sprawl of ideas, let alone who could pull off such a project so astutely.