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HECTOR GANNET Announce Debut Album Big Harcar

31st July 2020

North Shields “harcar rock” band HECTOR GANNET are delighted to announce the news of their debut albumBig Harcar, set for release on 30th October 2020 via GUGA Records.

There are nine tracks on the gatefold heavyweight vinyl (which also comes on limited edition ‘Gannet White’ vinyl) with two extra downloadable bonus tracks, and the CD version holds all 11 tracks. The album artwork was created by Matthew ‘Woody’ Wood (British Sea Power) and Dale Maloney (Lo-Fi Allstars).

The album is available to preorder now from: https://hectorgannet.bandcamp.com/

Taking its name from one of The Farne Islands off the coast of Northumberland, England, the record was produced byPaul Gregory of Mercury Prize-nominated Newcastle-Upon-Tyne quintet Lanterns on The Lake (Bella Union), and also features a guest appearance from vocalist Hazel Wilde on album track ‘Into The Deep’.

Celebrating the news, Hector Gannet are also pleased to reveal the video for their brand new single ‘The Launch’, which is out now on all good streaming services, and is comprised of archive footage from the Tyne shipbuilding industry.

Stream and share: https://ffm.to/thelaunch-lo143 

Commenting on the single, songwriter and frontman Aaron Duff says: “The Launch was influenced by viewing vintage footage of shipbuilding on the Tyne. So many people native to Tyneside are connected to this industry in some way, such was its reach among the community, and the launching of ships were very big occasions. The industry was massively important, and its ultimate decline is still keenly felt.”

“I visualised the build, and the structure of the tune kind of mirrors that, starting from the foundations, the basis, it builds up to the final push as the song rises to a crescendo, which represents the anticipation and the ultimate sense of pride and elation when the hard work is completed and a ship is launched.  I really wanted the piece to portray that and reflect the emotions which surround the whole process.”

It seems that Hector Gannet are here to remind us about things that matter, in a rather beautiful and poetic way. Forthcoming debut album Big Harcar may contain love songs to the land and to nature, yet they don’t shy away from the difficult issues we all face. Themes include empowering those who fight for just causes, examining the ugly side of patriotism, disregard for the planet, the selfish and ignorant draining of its resources, and the exploitation of regular working class people by the media and government. 

This is no mouthy rant though; the thoughts of Aaron Duff, who works both solo and as Hector Gannet’s band leader, are always presented beautifully, be it with clean guitar lines and gentile vocals, or underpinned by a wave of guitars. Straddling folk and alt rock, they have fittingly self-branded their sound as “Harcar Rock”. The idea that beauty and danger are often connected is not lost on the four young men, who named their band after a sunken vessel.

“The boat [Hector Gannet] was on its way to rescue people in trouble, lives were in danger, and as a result some lives were lost. It was tragic, but the sentiment of what was occurring is a very positive thing. If people don’t try and help one another then we’re all doomed,” says Aaron. He was born and grew up in North Shields, and like many in the region hails from a family steeped in the industries of fishing and shipbuilding. 

Most recently the band were commissioned by the North East Film Archive to write music for UK-wide project ‘Britain On Film’, run by the BFI, which led to old school friend and BRIT Award winner Sam Fender personally inviting Hector Gannet to support him on various dates around the UK, and praise from Hilton Valentine of The Animals.

The band have several festival appearances already confirmed for 2020/21, alongside further support slots with Lanterns on The Lake and Sam Fender, with more TBA.

Big Harcar is released 30th October 2020

Hector Gannet live dates:

06.09.20 – Bobiks – Newcastle Upon Tyne (solo headline show)
18.10.20 – Hit The North 2020 – Newcastle Upon Tyne
26.03.21 – Newcastle Upon Tyne (w/ Lanterns On The Lake)
29.05.21 – Northern Kin Festival – Stanhope
30.05.21 – This Is Tomorrow – Newcastle Upon Tyne
02.07.21 – Corbridge Festival 2021 – Tyndale RFC

‘The Launch’ artwork: