Hundred Reasons have returned with their first new material in 15 years. Check out the title track from new album ‘Glorious Sunset’ below, along with our interview with the band.
The Brit-rock veterans, who first found fame in the early ’00s with their top 10 charting debut album ‘Ideas Above Our Station’, today announce news of their fifth LP – their first since 2007’s ‘Quick The Word, Sharp The Action’.
The first taster of the record comes in the shape of the title track: a moody, cinematic and emotive song driven by the group’s trademark post-hardcore energy.
Speaking of the inspiration for the single, which started out as an instrumental demo from bassist Andy Gilmour with the title ‘Glorious Sunset’, frontman Colin Doran told NME: “From my perspective, it kind of had multiple meanings. We don’t know if we’re going to make any more music. We don’t want to be on the treadmill again and this has all been very organic.
“Andy had the idea for the song and sent over one of his instrumentals called ‘Glorious Sunset’. It became a metaphor for us saying, ‘We’re potentially done now, but we’re not going to think about it’. The theme around the lyrics was also around the sadness of my mum passing away. There was this release and relief because she’d suffered a lot and was in pain for such a long time.”
Hundred Reasons formed in 1999 and split in 2008, releasing four records and touring with the likes of Muse and Jimmy Eat World – as well as proving forerunners of the ’00s Brit-rock and UK emo scene. However, Doran said that the time was right for the band to call it quits.
“After ‘Quick The Word…’, personally for me that felt like it was going to be it,” he told NME. “I’m quite pragmatic and I think it had some good songs on it, but it wasn’t what I would call our best record. Things were on a bit of a downward turn, to be open and frank about it. We just ended up, not necessarily dissolving the band but everybody had to go and find other things to do. Those things took over, then weeks turned into months, which turned into years.”
Aside from a handful of reunion shows in 2012 to celebrate 10 years of their debut and a show at Sonisphere in 2014, the bandmembers took different paths.
“Larry [Hibbitt, guitar] was building his career as a producer, I was in education and doing stuff like that, [drummer, Andy] Bews was living in America which made rehearsal quite different, and Andy [Gilmour, bassist] was in another band at the time called Freeze Atlantic.
“We were all around, but not as the band. Then Andy and I did some acoustic shows as Undead Raisins, which was really good.”
After that, various booking agents started asking if they might play some more shows and the band decided that they would only do so if new material was involved.
“We were all on the same page,” said Doran. “It had to be important. We couldn’t just do some shows for the money – there had to be something around it. Management suggested we think about writing some new music and everyone was like, ‘Yeah, alright!’ We ended up round Larry’s studio in Brixton playing around with some ideas that turned out to be amazing. We came away thinking that it felt right, it sounded right, and therefore it should be right so we carried on!”
Hibbitt agreed: “The reason we don’t play all the time is that it has to feel like there’s a purpose for it. The surprising thing was that when we all got in a room together and started writing songs it all happened very quickly. It was probably the most natural writing process that we’d had since writing our first record, which gave me quite a lot of enthusiasm for it that I didn’t think was going to be there!”
The guitarist and producer also revealed that even in the very early stages of writing the record, he “realised that Colin had a lot to say”.
“There was a lot of anger and other emotions floating around, which really drove it for me and gave everything a focus,” said Hibbitt. “I realised that there were going to be some stories told and things that really mattered.
He continued: “For me musically, I felt like we couldn’t just release an early ‘00s emo record because we’re not in our 20s anymore and that doesn’t feel appropriate for four 40-year-old dudes. We had to reflect that energy of the first record, but it also had to be more grown-up to reflect the subject matter and where we’re all at in our lives. It had to have a bit of oddness and artiness in there too.
“It’s not a nostalgia trip that harks back to our first record, but there’s an energy and instantaneous quality to it.”
Asked about what shaped the lyrics of the new album, Doran replied: “Everyone’s at a different stage in their lives now. People have grown up, done different things, had different experiences. We’ve all experienced loss and been through the mill. That just gives you a lot more content to talk about the experience.
“When I was younger, I might have been a bit naive in terms of how I approached people. There are people who have disappointed me. With age comes a little bit more wisdom and you can spot the good people and the people who are maybe not so good. I’m looking at my own fallibilities. I like try to be a good person, but sometimes you hurt the people around you. You don’t always mean to, but circumstances in life just mean that happens.
He added: “My mum also passed away last year which became a theme. There was a real sense of loss from that, but also a real sense of anger. That culminated in some very different songs on the record.”
The band are looking forward to their Spring 2023 tour with fellow early ’00s veterans and old friends Hell Is For Heroes and My Vitriol, but aren’t hoping for a revival of the scene – despite the likes of Biffy Clyro finding their feet at a similar time on the same circuit.
“I don’t think about it,” admitted Doran. “We were all having a good time and we were all friends. I lived with Vex Red and all that. It was a very nice scene to be a part of because everyone was doing their own thing.”
Hibbitt admitted that the scene was “short-lived”, but an interesting time for UK music. “Between Britpop, mid-00s indie and emo turning into haircuts and glam metal, We existed in that little gap which only lasted for a few years,” he said. “It probably was overlooked or just moved on from quite quickly. That’s fine. It just makes it more special!”
Fans of Bring Me The Horizon may recognise Hundred Reasons’ name from when frontman Oli Sykes recently gave them a shout-out as a band he saw “at least 46 times” at The Leadmill in Sheffield when he was a teen. However, the band said they paid little mind to their potential influence on more contemporary bands, or if this next record might see them reappraised.
“It’s nice. A bit of recognition makes you feel like you did something important,” said Hibbitt. “I don’t think it’ll be more than that and we’re not thinking about anything beyond this album and tour. It’s nice to think that we had an impact on some people’s lives.”
Doran added: “If anything happens beyond the tour, then cool. For now, we’re doing something because we think we’ve made an absolutely incredible record. We want people to hear it and see it played live.”
Hundred Reasons release ‘Glorious Sunset’ on February 24, 2023. Check out the full tracklist below:
1. ‘Glorious Sunset’
2. ‘New Glasses’
3. ‘It suits You’
6. ‘Right There With You’
8. ‘So So Soon’
9. ‘The Old School Way’
10. ‘Wave Form’
Hundred Reason’s upcoming 2023 UK headline tour dates are below. Visit here for tickets and more information.
23 – O2 Academy, Leeds
24 – Barrowland, Glasgow
25 – Academy, Manchester
2 – O2 Academy, Bristol
3 – O2 Institute, Birmingham
4 – O2 Academy Brixton, London