Artist News

Matthew Herbert announces Brexit Big Band project

By | Published on Monday 13 March 2017

Matthew Herbert

Matthew Herbert has announced his new project, The Brexit Big Band. The musician plans to spend two years recording an album with collaborators all over Europe, starting the moment the British government triggers Article 50 and begins the process of leaving the European Union.

The aim is to begin with one sound and work until over 1000 people have contributed to the project, offering up numerous sounds and vocals sung in different languages.

As a starting point, potential contributions are already being collected through a project called Brexit Sound Swap. The website allows users to record and upload a three second sound, which then unlocks a collection of other sounds created by others. It’s described as “a sonic petition, each sound uploaded a mark of agreement that music is an idea in a dialogue with a stranger”.

“In an increasingly fractured and divided political climate where tolerance and creativity are under threat, it feels like an important time to assert the desire for our bit of the musical community in Britain to reach out in solidarity with some of our closest, but soon to be less accessible, friends and neighbours”, says Herbert. “I simply wouldn’t be the musician or person I am were it not for the countless collaborators and interactions with people from very different backgrounds, and nationalities to my own. I have learned so much, from so many disparate and often overlooked voices”.

“The message from parts of the Brexit campaign were that as a nation we are better off alone”, he continues. “I refute that idea entirely and wanted to create a project that embodies the idea of collaboration from start to finish”.

Take part in the Brexit Sound Swap here.