We Are Story Tellers
A Moment with The Academic
Ahead of the release of their sophomore album “Sitting Pretty”, Hidden Beats had the chance to spend A Moment with The Academic. After gaining momentum with their debut album “Tales from the Backseat”, opening for The Pixies -which was a big deal not just for the experience, but also because The Pixies were a huge influence for guitarist Matthew Murtagh- and touring around the world, The Academic took the opportunity to focus on music during the pandemic. The result of spending those lockdown years jamming and songwriting is “Sitting Pretty”, a spunky, straightforward rock album with a little bit of something for everyone.
On some of the differences in recording “Sitting Pretty”, lead singer Craig Fitzgerald had this to say in regards to how the members of The Academic approached the creative process this time around: “[T]his album was a lot of patience around the songwriting and then we were able to book [studio] time, and we weren’t too worried about the arrangements — we were kind of making it up in the room. It was definitely very different from our more pre-produced approach to going in and making an album. I think with time, we’re all a lot better with our instruments and we all trust each other completely as far as music goes, so this album was very much like an open field where we could just take the songs in loads of different directions. [That] wasn’t what we were like maybe five years ago where we were like a 4-4-2-indie-rock band, for anyone who’s into soccer (laughs).”
Even without the pandemic, lead singer Craig had this to say on the differences between recording songs for your second album as opposed to your first: “[W]hen it got to the first album, we had a lot of songs already road-tested and we knew which ones we would want on the album. When it came to [Sitting Pretty], we, unfortunately, can’t talk about this album without talking about the pandemic, and we couldn’t get into a studio so we made a couple of EPs out of the respect of the album because we respect the album process so much that we didn’t want to do something ‘from home’, let’s say.”
Even in our digital age, The Academic made sure to create something interesting for their fans that still enjoy a physical copy, by issuing “Sitting Pretty” on CD, vinyl, and… cassette! When asked what THEIR first albums purchased on cassette were, the boys all had the same answer: “We’re too old for cassettes, haha!”
The stick-a-pencil-in-to-rewind trick may be lost by the members of The Academic, but somewhere out there are fans that will be able to say, in 2023, that they purchased a new album on cassette! If you prefer to listen to music from a streaming service, “Sitting Pretty” is available on all the major platforms. Featuring the singles “Don’t Take it Personally”, “Pushing Up Daisies”, “Homesick”, and the recently released “My Very Best”. Give them a whirl, and enjoy a moment with The Academic.
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