Manchester’s Feather Trade effortlessly transcends boundaries, embracing an unwavering commitment to unfiltered, impassioned authenticity. Their concise anthems serve as rallying cries for the disenfranchised, championing the politically and sexually marginalized, and those disheartened by the relentless commodification of society, particularly within the realm of art. Their music exudes a timeless quality, evoking the wide-eyed social commentary reminiscent of early U2, the Maccabees, The Chameleons, The Brilliance, and Pixies.
Their universal message, however, firmly occupies the present: tackling contemporary struggles and crafting profoundly personal elegies that resonate deeply with those navigating our current complexities and uncertainties. Their newest single, A Ready Defense, delves into the complexities of human nature and the perennial struggle to transcend the challenges of the winter season, both literal and metaphorical. It serves as a reminder of our shared humanity, our capacity for empathy, and the ongoing quest to find ways to realize these ideals even in the face of adversity.
“The song came to me in a fever dream when I was very ill while visiting family during a holiday season a few years ago,” says Chisolm Thompson. “I wouldn’t say this was ever meant to be a ‘Christmas’ song as such, but it’s a song about winter and how I believe it is, after all these centuries, still the hardest time of the year for humanity. Deep down I think it brings out our best nature to want to look for the greater good in everyone, but I think we’re often tortured by the inability to find ways to do it.”
Thompson’s introspective reflection provides a deep insight into the thematic depth of A Ready Defense. It reveals a desire for unity and the innate urge to strive for the betterment of all, but also acknowledges the painful struggle and personal anguish that often accompany this pursuit. This is punctuated by the anguished vocals accompanied by a persistent military-style drum beat, evoking the sound of a slow, steady march forward in the face of adversity.
“I’ve always struggled with guilt during the season of celebrating, knowing there’s so much loss out there during a time of excess, with so many with so little,” he says. “It’s always most tragic when we’ve lost good friends to crushing loneliness, substance abuse, the weight of the world. I often reflect on the power of acknowledgement of other people. I often dwell on the homeless and the lonely and wish there was a way to give something more to people. Sometimes it seems the mid-winter season is the time when everyone genuinely endeavors to acknowledge and celebrate the existence of one another; of the recognition of dignity in someone else’s humanity.”
Listen below or at your streaming service of choice here.
After a triumphant 2019 UK tour, backing Spear of Destiny, the Athens, Georgia-based group ventured onto their inaugural full UK tour and unveiled their debut tour album, ‘The Sound Of Broken Worlds.’ Navigating pandemic-induced travel constraints, they showcased their inventive spirit by crafting a cross-continental concert experience. In this innovative performance, bandmates played live while projecting their virtual presence from diverse locations. This groundbreaking concert is now available in the recently released DVD ‘Live and Transatlantic’ or as an exclusive live-streamed event.
Feather Trade have shared stages with The Soft Moon, Deerhoof, Daniel Johnston, Florence and the Machine, and The Maccabees, as well as The Blinders and Peter Hook and The Light. The band is currently recording their debut album with US producer Matt Yelton (Pixies, Frank Black and the Catholics),
Feather Trade now tour the UK this November 2023 support of “A Ready Defense,” and have a series of dates lined up in late April/early May, as well as festival appearances in the summer and fall of 2024. UK fans, take note:
- Sat 18 SALFORD The Eagle Inn
- Wed 22 NOTTINGHAM The Chapel
- Thu 23 YORK Fulford Arms
- Tue 28 OXFORD The Bullingdon (with The Chameleons)
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