UK indie rockers The Answering Machine will be one of the many highlights at the 2009 CMJ music marathon in New York City. This year will mark the 29th edition where over 120,000 fans, artists, filmmakers, and industry pros from around the globe are expected to visit the Big Apple for all the Marathon madness.
The Answering Machine have been hailed as Manchester’s ‘most likely to..’ since their fledgling introduction back in Autumn 2006. Back then the band were a fresh-faced trio, armed solely with a canon of jittery, indie-pop gold and a drum machine. Forming out of all-night parties and gigs on a Manchester campus, Martin, Pat and Gemma bunkered-up in a cold and desolate bedroom to grapple with melodic, poetic and simply joyous pop music.
Acclaim arrived hard and fast. Arguably too fast – the band needed time to shape new ideas, and headed leftfield to make good on all that early promise, and without compromise.
Having spent most of 2008 prolifically writing several dozen new songs, the young citygazers locked themselves up in a remote North Yorkshire studio with Manic Street Preachers’ producer Dave Eringa, and return with their eagerly awaited debut album, and a strong call to arms for the anxieties and dilemmas of their own generation.
The Answering Machine have also taken the time to bolster their attack, doubling their beats per minute with new recruit drummer Ben Perry, placed alongside long-standing drum-machine favourite, ‘Mustafa Beat’.
In the making of ‘Another City, Another Sorry’, The Answering Machine have managed to find a distinct clarity in the haze of growing up within their adopted city, and they lay it bare with all the confusion and isolation endured to discover it.
When the trio introduced themselves with the indie-disco favourite ‘Oklahoma’, they were drawing out stumbled lines, joining dots from one late house riot to another. Young, carefree and impressionable, the band had become the toast of the city and beyond.
Yet the band had to contend with more than just the accolade of becoming Manchester’s new favourite sons. Through lust-fuelled, wired, carefree all-nighters, each member as an individual was hopelessly trying to put-off the transition between those late night teenage years and into the realities of where they turn next. It was a process that all their friends were enduring too, and verged on the makings of a mid-youth crisis.
Juxtaposed with those anxieties, The Answering Machine were surrounded by the imposing but quite beautifully influential architecture of their historical city, yet Manchester was now less becoming a playground than a chamber with the walls closing in. As the years receded, the band were caught up in a whirlpool of emotions living in a changing world where Facebook was dictating fractured social interaction and the romanticism of true communication, or least its lack of convenience, was becoming a lost art.
The album plots that path from party lifestyle into the dawn of youthful realisation, those steps in-between and ultimately what comes next. If music’s revered social commentators are typically southern based, The Answering Machine are taking the North by the scruff of the neck, and presenting it with an assured understanding.
Martin Colclough: “We’re still writing about drinking, sex and arguing but those things go so much deeper than surface level and it took us time to adjust to and understand that.
“We’ve had to redefine the boundaries of relationships, and master the act of survival which everyone our age is having to do.
“Ultimately we have written an album that we hope a generation and beyond will be able to identify with.”
The Answering Machine are:
Martin Colclough – Vocals, guitar
Pat Fogarty – Vocals, guitar
Gemma Evans – Vocals, bass
Ben Perry – Drums
New York City CMJ Festival Dates:
MusicSlut Party @ Cake Shop
October 22nd, 10 PM
Future Sounds / Planetary Day Party @ Pianos
October 23rd, 3 PM
October 24th, 8 PM
Residency At Coco 66
October 28th – Coco66- Brooklyn, NY
November 4th – Coco66 – Brooklyn, NY
November 10th – Coco66 – Brooklyn, NY