Photo: Maxime Sokolinski
Download: Beth Jeans Houghton – Dodecahedron
Hurrah! Beth Jeans Houghton is back, with details of a new track, Dodecahedron, and her debut album on Mute. After the release of only one EP (Hot Toast) and one single (Golden/Night Swimmer), Beth attracted major mainstream media attention, became a big festival draw in the process and then promptly disappeared. But, where’s she been?
“I’m going to utilise the ‘due to unforeseen circumstances’ line and leave it at that,” says Newcastle born Houghton, still only 21. “I spent a substantial amount of the last year in Los Angeles falling in love with the city, which is a first for me. I usually go for guys.”
There was also the small matter of recording her debut album, a process Beth wanted to do on her own terms at her own speed. Recorded with producer Ben Hillier (Blur, Elbow, Depeche Mode, Doves). “I see this album as an animal I’m preparing to ride,” says Beth. “Grooming it, feeding it, braiding its hair, and I feel that Ben has built me a saddle that is both practical and comfortable to use.”
For a taste of the album (due for release Autumn 2011), which is sure to be one of the year’s most exciting releases, the track Dodecahedron is available to download for free. Showcasing Beth’s extraordinary voice and off-kilter lyrics, it explodes in cascades of colours and little drummer boy beats. “The night before I wrote it I had a dream that consisted of me running up to strangers in the street and asking them what a dodecahedron was, but no one knew,” says Beth. “I later found out that the ancient Greeks believed the Dodecahedron is a symbol of the universe and represents an idealized form of divine thought. Take from that what you will.”