In the weird, hyper-speed blog-world of the 21st century musical underground Fiction's '80's inflected, thoughtful, outsider indie has served to set them apart from a revolving door of faddish trends and fly by night 'scenes'.
Taking a template determined by debut single Curiosity, the London based quintet of James Howard, Mike Barrett, Nick Barrett, Dave Miller and Jacob Smedegaard saw their rich mash of poly-rhythms and spidery guitar lines pay dividends when second single Big Things was picked up and playlisted by 6music and chosen for an advert by Ford.
With recording for their album underway, Fiction's multi-instrumentalists honed their live performance with a number of high profile support slots - Warpaint, Metronomy and Everything Everything - and dropped a new track Careful in the summer - regarded to be "Unquestionably one of the singles of the year so far" by The Sunday Times.
Now, the distillation of eighteen months work, The Big Other produced by Ash Workman and James Ford, is set for release by Moshi Moshi on March 4th. Relaxed and more comfortable in itself, with a more restrained exploration of melody and harmony than you'd have guessed from their earlier singles, The Big Other showcases how far Fiction have come in their musical development.
Forthcoming single Museum - premiered by The Guardian "finesses the band's influences into a more engaging whole" - works as a fitting introduction. Lead track Parting Gesture is - according to the band - "one long sonic ramp and always felt like an introduction to something" whilst the slinking, low-slung and almost groovy bassline of 'Vertigo in Bed' proves yet another highlight. Album closer The Apple is a homage to Alan Turing, who was persecuted for his homosexuality; it proves a poignant finale to this ambitious and stunningly developed intricate album.
With their long awaited debut album out on Moshi Moshi on March 4th, Fiction have added a run of regional tour dates to their NME Awards headline show on February 25th.
UK LIVE DATES:
Feb 25, London, Electrowerkz
Mar 15, Portsmouth, The Registry
Mar 16, Bournemouth, Sixty Million Postcards
Mar 17, Guildford, Boileroom
Mar 18, Cambridge, The Portland Arms
Mar 19, Brighton, Green Door Store
Mar 20, Bristol, Louisiana
Mar 21, Birmingham, Rainbow 250
Mar 22, Leeds, Cockpit
Mar 23, Manchester, The Soup Kitchen
Mar 25, Newcastle, Think Tank @ Holts Yard
Mar 26, Glasgow, Broadcast
Mar 27, Liverpool, Shipping Forecast
Mar 28, Sheffield, Bungalows & Bears
Mar 29, Nottingham, Spanky Van Dykes
Mar 30, Reading, Oakford Social Club
The La La Land star missed out on the Best Actor gong just before the ceremony descended into chaos
He's certainly not wasting his newfound talents.