Stealing Sheep return with “Apparition”, the third single to be released from their critically acclaimed second album Not Real.

Accompanied by a playful video, directed by Dougal Wilson, in his first music video in 6 years, that creates the illusion of a candid one shot in an unassuming village square witnessing a group of Morris dancers that are infiltrated by the band.

The band explains “we liked the idea because the English folk imagery juxtaposes the moody synth style of the music. The Morris dancing goes surprisingly well with the electronic drums and made us laugh! We love the dreamlike flow of the choreography and the camera. It was Dougal that first introduced us to a female experimental film maker from the 50's called Maya Deren and her style really influenced our visual when we began working on our album, exploring dreams, subjective reality and streams of consciousness"

Wilson elaborates:

"The idea for ‘Apparition’ came from the fact that the song had a mysterious, hypnotic feeling, and the fact that I’ve always found Morris Dancing slightly strange and psychedelic. I’d also wanted to re-visit Morris Dancing since I made a Four Tet video in 2003, where I simply cut existing Morris footage to music. Since then, I’d always wanted to take the idea further by actually having a band learn Morris Dancing themselves, and this seemed like an appropriate opportunity given the unexpected contrast of the girls' personalities with the characters in a genuine Morris side. Very luckily for me, Emily, Becky and Lucy, were very conscientious and learnt their dance steps very well. I also thought it would be appropriate to attempt to capture it in one (apparently) continuous take, as Morris dancing seems to always shot by one camera when it appears on Youtube."

Following a hugely busy and successful festival season, which included an appearance at David Byrne’s Meltdown, Stealing Sheep are about to embark on a equally busy Autumn live schedule which includes support shows with Django Django and further performances of the In Dreams: David Lynch Revisited series (in Dublin, Bristol and Paris) alongside Villagers, Stuart Staples, Mick Harvey and Jehnny Beth from Savages. The band will also be performing in NYC as part of CMJ. Upcoming live info below:

Friday 10 December – BRUSSELS – AB w/ Django Django

Critical acclaim for Not Real, out now on Heavenly Recordings:

  • “A bold and creative leap into future-folk… Over 10 mini-masterpieces the trio craft odd, brilliant and utterly English pop music… Truly, a class act.” MOJO – 4 Stars ****
  • “A new visionary adventure… Herein are fabricated, fantastical and wildly colourful imaginings about the future and the universe.” The Guardian – 4 Stars ****
  • Not Real catapults the Liverpool-based trio into a shiny, silver-suited, synth-pop future.” NME – 8/10
  • “An accomplished set that charms and unsettles in equal mesaure, and proves the breadth of these girls' talents.” Metro – 4 Stars ****
  • “A new eureka moment every sixty seconds.” DIY – 4 Stars ****
  • Not Real moves the trio into dreamier, more intriguing territory, with more electronics and experimentation. They pull off shifts in mood and tone with routine aplomb… A triumph.” Uncut – 7/10
  • “An interesting hybrid of accessible but surreal, metronomic pop, while the band’s choral vocal harmonies are sounding better than ever.” Loud & Quiet - 7/10
  • “They take 60s folk, 70s krautrock and 80s synthpop, place them all in a musical blender and press the button marked "psychedelic"… A charming album.” Sunday Times
  • “Freak-folk femmes go synth-pop.” Q Magazine
  • “It sums up an album that’s more mature and focussed harnessing all of their interesting quirks within a showcase of excellent songwriting.” MusicOMH
  • “A holy alliance between The Dreaming-era Kate Bush and the psychedelic Beatles” The Quietus
  • “A surprising - and, at times, genius - second album.” Clash
  • A properly great piece of modern psychedelic pop… evoking a very English sort of psychedelia but in a very modern, cliché-averse way.” Dummy
  • “Consistently intriguing and occasionally glorious, Not Real feels like a genuine step forward.” The Line Of Best Fit

The unifying theme of the 'Not Real' is the interplay of fact and fiction; the edge of dreams and limits of reality. These visions are grounded by bright melodies and insistent beats and unified by vocal harmonies; sometimes metronomic and chant-like, sometimes choral and pop. Follow them on a hypnagogic journey as they sing: “listen to yourself and look within”.

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