Manchester Orchestra: 2017
Manchester Orchestra at WFUV (photo by San Tuozzoli)
It’s been a game-changing few years for the Atlanta band Manchester Orchestra. After losing their rhythm section, and their record deal, childhood friends and bandmates, Andy Hull and Robert McDowell restructured. They went totally independent and released the electric Cope and acoustic Hope — albums that covered the same set of songs — which launched a journey of sonic exploration focused more on vocals.
That pair of albums led to yet another step outside their comfort zone: writing a film score, with the voice as their primary instrument. So it's no surprise that the fifth album from Manchester Orchestra, A Black Mile To The Surface, is their most fully-realized, cinematic collection of songs to date.
On their return to Studio A, Hull and McDowell shared a couple of songs with us in a special acoustic performance. We also chatted about the new album and how challenging themselves is essential to their creative process.