Celebrated Ghent-based dance outfit, Hercules and Love Affair, have returned with their new single ‘Grace’. The new track is the Andy Butler-helmed project’s first release in five years. Following the new offering, they have announced that they are releasing their new album In Amber, on June 17th, via BMG.
A slow-burner, featuring an earworm of a piano line, the song builds up to a heady climax, evoking all the colours and feelings of the ‘90s club scene that Hercules and Love Affair owe so much to. Aside from the more traditional house and techno elements, this is one of Butler’s catchiest vocal performances, and strangely, at times, it sounds rather like an Arab Strap song, and we’re all for it. Haunting, beautiful and cathartic, this is classic Hercules and Love Affair.
“Across this record, there are emotional fields I hadn’t ventured into previously with Hercules And Love Affair,” Butler said. “Destruction, rage, loss, but also redemption and journeying towards empowerment are all touchstones on the album. It has taken years to make, but I am happy to put it forward now, at a moment in time where we have all been confronted with such heightened feelings collectively and on an unprecedented scale”.
Butler continued: “In dance music, the focus tends to be more on celebration, joy, desire, heartbreak. But rage? Existential contemplation? Not so much…certain emotions seemed to be off-limits”.
Excitingly, Butler has reunited with Anohni for the project, 14 years after they last worked together, on the band’s eponymous debut album.
Reflecting on the inherent goth of his new work, Butler said: “In some ways, In Amber is a record I didn’t know I had in me. From singing out, to suggesting to get Budgie (from Siouxsie and the Banshees and The Creatures fame) to participate, to derailing some of the arrangements for more impact – Anohni definitely pulled much of it out of me.”
“As an artist that has always puts my personal lived experience forward in my work, not to mention the chaos of living through these recent times, I could not in good conscience make something comfortable,” Butler positied. “I needed to express my discomfort. Making a 90’s sounding techno or house record, or an odd 80’s sounding dance track was not anything I needed to do”.
Listen to ‘Grace’ below.
In Amber tracklist:
- ‘You’ve Won This War’
- ‘Christian Prayers’
- ‘Contempt for You’
- ‘Gates of Separation’
- ‘Killing His Family’
- ‘Who Will Save Us?’
- ‘The Eyes of the Father’
- ‘Poisonous Storytelling’