Babeheaven Break Down Their Soulful LP “Home for Now” Track by Track
Nancy Andersen walks us through the U.K. duo’s debut album that was four years in the making.
In a moment of albums recreating the cabin fever of Bon Iver’s solitary debut, Babeheaven’s long-in-the-works debut feels like a breath of fresh air. Fully embracing the “quarantine album” label, rather than professing the loneliness of self-isolation or hopelessness running rampant amid a global pandemic, the duo of Nancy Andersen and Jamie Travis condense a half decade together as a band—not to mention their lifelong friendship—into forty-five minutes of breezy, soulful electronic music infusing Andersen’s pop background (her dad wrote TV commercial jingles) with Travis’ alt sensibilities (his dad founded Rough Trade records).
With the record dropping last Friday, Andersen took the time to walk us through the eleven grooves (and three interludes) which, together, form a surprisingly coherent recording encompassing the past few years of the band’s life. Stream the record below, and read on for some commentary.
I wrote this song about my family and friends when they were getting me down. I really love it, but when I sing it live I put different people’s names into the intro to make it a bit more fun for me. It’s like a little joke in my head.
2. “Human Nature”
I still don’t know, what’s human nature!
3. “Until the End”
We put loads of samples into the beat of this song, one of them was the sound of an out-of-service gun trigger being pulled, and another was my camera lens trying to focus.
4. “Interlude: June 4th”
I think interludes are songs that are so good that you can’t finish them.
5. “Cassette Beat”
James: One of my favorites on the album, it’s a song that made me feel quite emotional as we were making it, which is always a good sign.
6. “In My Arms”
This song is like a journey, it starts and swirls into loads of different places.
7. “Interlude: 6 Times Around”
8. “Craziest Things”
An insomnia song; I can be really mean when I’m tired, so it’s an apology to everyone who I upset when I am horrible.
9.. “Swimming Up River”
I was super upset when I wrote this song—it was in the middle of a Black Lives Matter protest and I was thinking a lot about my experience in the music industry, and trying to create space for Black women in the alternative music world.
10. “Friday Sky”
Old, but gold. This song is a nice reminder of where we began and where we are now.
11. “How Deep (Love)”
I wanted to write a song from someone else’s perspective, so I wrote this song about Orpheus and Euridice’s Greek myth.
12. “Interlude: I’ve Been Gone”
I love this interlude, it’s maybe the best song on the album.
This song started with the idea of trying something different for the instrumentation of the verse, and was the start of leaning toward using the bass as the main melodic and rhythmic driver in songs. A few friends played the string part recorded in my dad’s small writing room.
14. “Through the Night”
This feels like the perfect ending for the album—it’s about getting a bit older and coming to terms with things changing in life.