Tuesday, 2 January
Prime Circle by ReedValley
Regarded as South African rock royalty, with a string of awards and sold-out concerts to their credit, Prime Circle has spent the past couple of years ratcheting up its international profile, building a solid following in the tough-to-crack and discerning German market in particular.
As the band prepare to embark on a nearly sold-out tour of Germany, Prime Circle are bouncing back with fresh energy and purpose after a three-year recording hiatus with a new album, “If You Don’t You Never Will”.
South Africa’s most successful rock band, which is also making serious inroads into the European market, will be launching the new 10-track album exclusively to South African fans on iTunes on 15 September 2017, ahead of the global reveal on 22 September 2017. The first single is “The Gift”, which will dropped in South Africa on 30 August.
The album’s worldwide release will coincide with a multi-date tour of Germany that will take in Hanover, Nuremberg, Munich, Konstanz, Essen, Hamburg, Berlin, Frankfurt and Karlsruhe, before the band returns to South Africa and Namibia for several months of summer festival appearances and concerts.
“If You Don’t You Never Will” is Prime Circle’s seventh studio album, and their first new recording since their acclaimed 2014 release “Let the Night In”, which was repackaged as a deluxe edition in 2016.
Prime Circle may have secured a German agent and an international recording deal, yet their roots remain firmly lodged in South Africa – which is why they are giving local fans first dibs at hearing their new material.
“We’re very excited about the new album,” says lead vocalist and songwriter Ross Learmonth. “We feel like we’re coming back with a new energy after three years. Musically, there’s definitely been a progression – we’re not fans of repeating ourselves.
“What’s great about the album is that the songs flow nicely – I just sing, open up and let loose. A lot of it stems from the free, subliminal nature of much of the writing. We recorded the album in a tight period of five weeks, which meant we weren’t overcooking things or going through the songs with a fine-tooth comb.”
Learmonth says that the band’s “secret weapon” was, once again, his MadHouse studio creative partner Gavin Davis, who was also the brains behind their “Ghosts” music video. “We’re so proud of this album – it’s something special and a step in the right direction. It’s not overproduced to any degree.”
He says there’s no specific theme running through the album but “there is an element of romance in it” – also echoed in the album cover, a dreamy image reminiscent of surrealist René Magritte’s art, of a man with his head literally “in the clouds”.
In a departure for the band, the album title isn’t echoed in the track listing – but, says Learmonth, the lyrics “If You Don’t You Never Will” do appear in one of the songs and refer generally to “the procrastination in all our lives”.
For Prime Circle, though, there’s clearly no time like the present to seize the day – and make the dreams and opportunities happen for themselves.
Prime Circle’s line-up is Ross Learmonth (vocals and guitar); Marco Gomes (bass); Dale Schnettler (drums); Neil Breytenbach (keyboard) and Dirk Bisschoff (guitar).