Primed with three albums recorded in rapid succession during the latter half of the past decade . the Kaiser Chiefs took a calculated gamble and decided to regroup out of the spotlight with a self imposed hiatus.
Last seen when they played their biggest shows to date at London’s Wembley Arena back in 2009 the band have been anything but idle in the intervening period which has seen Nick Hodgson and Simon Rix form Chewing Gum Records – home of The Neat, with Hodgson also embarking on numerous production opportunities with new acts including The Vaccines alongside song writing contributions for the likes of Dame Shirley Bassey, Mark Ronson and Duran Duran.
The recipients of various awards over the past six years, amongst others; three Brits, Ivor Novello’s and other assorted accolades, the band have also generated in excess of six million album sales – including the debut chart topping soundtrack of 2005 ‘Employment’ – whilst cementing a worldwide reputation as a phenomenal live act accompanying the likes of Green Day , Foo Fighters and U2 on worldwide tours , two sold out shows at London’s Earls Court Arena at the close of 2007 followed by an historic hometown show at Leeds United’s Elland Road football ground in the Spring of 2008 and subsequently dates and festival appearances across the globe.
In time, 2011 will be recalled as a pivotal period for the Kaiser Chiefs. For the manner in which they have approached the concept of making their music available to fans and critics alike and to re-invigorate the entire mechanism both artistically and commercially.
Initially conceived whilst on a break in Cornwall, singer Ricky Wilson and friend Oli Beale had been discussing how the band might make a return. Wilson was keen to offset the promo frenzy that surrounds an album, prior to its release usually months later, hence the idea was to have the music ready and let people hear it immediately, no pre-emptive promotional schedules – fans and critics alike able to access the music at the same time and thus ‘The Future Is Medieval’ was born. Coincidently Wilson’s holidaying companion Beale’s day job led to an involvement that would be integral to the success of the entire model and the backing of some of the country’s leading lights in the technology to actually bring the idea to fruition.
Hodgson, meanwhile had constructed a studio in the basement of the bands management offices and the band, although not active were writing, demoing and compiling a catalogue of tracks which would later be recorded with the likes of Tony Visconti, Ethan Johns, Owen Morris and Hodgson himself. The band’s template was taking shape and whilst managing to remain out of sight ,were able to evolve their ideas without distraction.
Released to an unsuspecting public on June 3rd 2011, ‘The Future Is Medieval’ has embraced the spontaneity and excitement of making music again and has seen a wide ranging and diverse selection of influences – short sharp new wave , a discerning nod towards Bowie , surprisingly Pink Floyd – an influence on the entire idea both musically and visually and the likes of the Who which sees the band return to the scene of their earlier endeavors.The net result for both the band, their fans and on a broader level from people who may not have been fans of them previously was to have their interest sparked by the originality of the idea…’The Future Is Medieval’. The resultant finished thirteen track album released some weeks later has become the band’s fourth Top Ten album in six years, no mean feat these days and life shows no signs of slowing down as they continue to wow crowds across Europe over the coming weeks before returning from SXSW,headline slots at Ibiza and Majorca Rocks to play the ONLY consecutive shows at any venue before finales at Reading and hometown Leeds Festivals.