Since the early 80s, Big Block 454 has been making exploratory, highly individual music that encompasses rock, funk, electronica, folk music, Dadaist collage and much more besides. Colin Robinson has been the one constant member since the band’s inception, with Mark Joell and Alex Stone completing the current line-up. Each band member is a multi-instrumentalist, but Big Block 454’s approach also encompasses the creation of sound on instruments they don’t know how to play, and those that hadn’t been invented before the band made them.
Despite the band’s experimental approach, they fully intend their music to be accessible, catchy even. That’s why you’ll find on their new album – Bells and Proclamations – faux-folk songs, glam rock excursions and grand prog-rock motifs alongside ambient chill-out pieces and electro-funk workouts. But it’s the lyrical approach that helps define what Big Block 454 are all about – although the band claims that all the songs ‘mean something’, the lyrics can often be surreal, obscurely poetic or nonsensical at first listening.
“We love it when people tell us what our songs mean to them,” says Robinson. “Often the meaning they find in our music differs from our intention, but that’s fine.”
The band has found past champions in Stuart Maconie, who featured Big Block 454 on his Freakzone show, comedian and man of taste Stewart Lee, and racing commentator John McCririck.
Two years in the making, here is the new album, "Bells & Proclamations".