‘Glorious You’ EP – August 25, 2014
Watch the video for lead track ‘Condolence’:
Tickets for London show (Emmanuel Centre, Oct 29 2014): http://www.seetickets.com/event/benjamin-clementine/emmanuel-centre/806919Aged 24, North London newcomer Benjamin Clementine has announced plans for the release of his new four-track EP, ‘Glorious You’. Available on August 25, this will be Clementine’s first release since signing to Virgin/EMI and follows his impassioned and critically acclaimed debut EP ‘Cornerstone’. ‘Glorious You’ includes the home-town hymn ‘Edmonton’ – a Zane Lowe Next Hype – and the opening and lead track ‘Condolence’, the video to which was filmed on the west coast of Ireland in The Burran (great rock).
Initially raised in Crystal Palace before settling in Edmonton, Clementine made his UK television debut on BBC2’s Later… with Jools Holland in October last year. Unsigned in the UK at the time, the performance of the title track from his debut EP led to two critically acclaimed sold-out shows at London’s Purcell Rooms and a five star review in the London’s Evening Standard. Since then, Clementine has supported the likes of Cat Power, Tune-Yards and Woodkid, headlined London’s Koko and played sold-out shows across Europe, including to 1200 people at La Cigale in Paris.
Grand, rich and featuring for the first time the introduction of wider instrumentation, the new EP opens with the rhythmically pulsating ‘Condolence’ in which Clementine declares, ‘’I’m sending my condolence to fear, I’m sending my condolence to insecurities, you should know by now I just don’t care”. The live favourite ‘Adios’ and the intensely autobiographical ‘Edmonton’ (one of the most deprived, crime-ridden area of London) follow. The EP closes with the lovelorn ‘Mathematics’ – ‘simply subtract one from two and you’ll be left with you now’. Amongst the minor scales and moving narratives present on ‘Glorious You’ lies a message of against the odds positivity and promise.
Says Clementine, “No one can really stop you from doing what you want to do, but only yourself” remarks Clementine. “I am from Edmonton, North London, where the youths are apparently said to be quite rowdy and criminal minded. But as my English literature teacher once remarked; ‘there are no requisite differences between hearsays and where frogs play; they are all full of categorical shit”.
Clementine has packed a lot into his 24 years: heartbreak, homelessness, a Phoenix-from-the-Ashes reinvention, before reaching cult status in Paris, the. The real learning started aged 11, when one of his older brothers brought a keyboard home; within a year Benjamin was the more proficient. Later, while his siblings got into hip-hop, he found himself tuning into classical radio; the first piece he heard was a spare, beautiful piano solo by Erik Satie, which transformed the way he played. He began imitating Satie and other solo pianists. At age 16, in a rare moment of permitted TV watching, he caught New York avant-gardists Anthony and the Johnsons performing the disarmingly naked ‘Hope There’s Someone’ on the BBC – and was duly blown away.
Moving to Paris had a sort of abstract logic: there’d been trouble with a flatmate in Camden, a brief infatuation with a woman who was half-Brazilian, half-French, and an overwhelming urge to get away. When his money ran out, he started sleeping rough and then busking inside the Metro at Place de Clichy station, where he would put his grey Kangol hat on the floor to collect donations and sing A cappella. From there, what was born out of a need to survive, became a calling for Clementine and an experience for the thousands of Parisian commuters that saw him perform daily for nearly two years, building his voice and refining his craft, as he made enough money to move first to a hostel and then into a room of his own. Now, four years on and back residing in his native London, Benjamin Clementine’s ‘Glorious You’ EP is available to pre-order on iTunes.
European tour dates:
07 Aug – DE, Haldern, Haldern Pop Festival – http://haldernpop.com/tickets/
29 Aug – UK, Larmer Tree Gardens, End Of The Road Festival – http://www.endoftheroadfestival.com/tickets/
31 Aug – NOR, Oslo, Picnic In The Park – http://www.billettservice.no/artist/944604
06 Sep – NL, Vlieland, Into The Great Wide Open – http://intothegreatwideopen.nl/tickets
16 Oct – HUN, Budapest, Cafe Budapest – http://cafebudapestfest.jegy.hu/arrivalorder.php?tseid=4350&eid=265853&aid=5941&vid=212&lang=hu
29 Oct – UK, London, Emmanuel Centre – http://www.seetickets.com/Event/benjamin-clementine/emmanuel-centre/806919
28 Nov – DE, Heidelberg, Karlstorbahnhof – www.karlstorbahnhof.de/
29 Nov – DE, Cologne, Statdgarten – http://www.stadtgarten.de/
07 Dec – NL, Rotterdam, Lanteren Venster – http://www.lantarenvenster.nl/36-4393-Benjamin_Clementine
08 Dec – NL, Amsterdam, Paradiso – http://www.ticketmaster.nl/event/benjamin-clementine-tickets/135061
09 Dec – NL, Nijmegen, Doornroosje – http://www.doornroosje.nl/agenda/6052/benjamin-clementine
“Visceral doesn’t even begin to describe Clementine’s songs, which combine the hurt and danger of Nina Simone, Antony Hegarty’s tremulous passion and Laura Mvula’s boundary-straddling music – a thrilling debut EP” – Sunday Times Culture
“’Cornerstone’ is packed with emotion: loneliness, fear and isolation – driven by relentless piano and haunting lyricism that recalls Clementine’s difficult past” – The Lines of Best Fit
“An extraordinary new musical talent. Incredible” ***** – Evening Standard (London’s Purcell Room, Dec 13)
“Sombre piano balladry that goes straight for the gut” – DIY Magazine
“Marries the intimacy of Antony Hegarty with the passion of Aretha Franklin and the intensity of Edith Piath, delivering his introspective lyrics about integrity and vulnerability with an almost operative soul sensibility that recalls Nina Simone” – The Independent