Not long after The Maccabees‘ recent split, frontman Orlando Weeks has announced his return with a new hardback book and accompanying soundtrack album.
The news comes almost exactly a year after The Maccabees announced their break-up on August 8 of last year. The beloved indie group released four albums in total since forming in 2002. Their most recent record ‘Marks To Prove It’, released in July 2015, followed on from ‘Given to the Wild’ (2012), ‘Wall of Arms’ (2009) and debut ‘Colour It In’ (2007).
Weeks’ new project ‘The Gritterman’ is due September 7th on Particular Books / Penguin. The book’s plot centres around a road gritter who is made redundant. “An ice-cream man in the summer months, The Gritterman’s true love is his other seasonal job: to secure the safety of treacherously icy roads at the height of winter,” reads a synopsis. “The turning point comes early in the narrative when the local council writes to tell The Gritterman that his services are no longer required. After this revelation we follow our hero on his final night of doing the job that he loves.”
“A lot of people’s work goes unrecognised and this is one of those jobs where that’s the case,” says Weeks in a press release. “To just go about your business and not need thanks is a very attractive quality, and he finds comfort in that sense of purpose.”
The book will also be accompanied by a soundtrack album, written and recorded by Orlando Weeks and narrated by actor and comedian Paul Whitehouse. “The Gritterman is kindly and light-hearted but stoic at the same time and Paul was able to strike that balance perfectly,” says Weeks. “Funny but thoughtful. He’s been a joy to work with.”
Listen to ‘Seasonal Hero’ from the album below, and pre-order ‘The Gritterman’ here.
The Maccabees played their final show at the end of June at London’s Alexandra Palace, bringing out Jamie T, Jack Penate and Mystery Jets to mark the occasion, and prompting numerous tributes from other musicians.
Asked if the split meant it was definitely it for The Maccabees in a recent interview, guitarist Felix White responded: “I would say so, we haven’t made a film like LCD Soundsystem, put it that way. I would draw a line under it.”
The guitarist, who runs the club night and record label Yala!, also discussed his plans for after the final show. “I’ve decided not to preempt anything and just work it out,” he said. “I thought I was going to have some time off but then I realised that I accidentally booked in a session writing with Jessie Ware, me and Hugo [White, brother and fellow Maccabees guitarist].
“So I’m going to be doing that for a couple of days which will probably be quite good to just get into something, and then I’m personally just going to stop and maybe have a couple of weeks, and just work out what it is instinctively that I feel like is going to be next in life.”