Midlake – live at Glastonbury Festival 2010 – June 26, 2010 BBC6 Music –
Some Stateside Indie by way of Midlake in concert at Glastonbury 2010 – recorded and broadcast by BBC 6 Music on June 26, 2010.
Midlake was formed in 1999 by a group of jazz students at the University of North Texas College of Music. The original lineup consisted of Tim Smith (vocals, guitars, keyboards), McKenzie Smith (drums), Paul Alexander (bass), Eric Nichelson (guitar), and Evan Jacobs (keyboards). Their initial work – under the name “The Cornbread All-Stars” – consisted of funk/jazz explorations heavily influenced by Herbie Hancock.
Later, the band began to lean more toward an indie rock sound. Tim Smith quit playing saxophone and began writing songs that were heavily influenced by bands such as Jethro Tull, Radiohead, Björk, and Grandaddy, artists who experiment, while still remaining accessible.
Though the group spent much of 2011 and 2012 recording at the farm in Buffalo, Texas where The Courage of Others was tracked, the recording process stalled. “We knew something was missing,” guitarist Eric Pulido said. Midlake played a handful of live dates and debuted new material in 2012, including an appearance at Bella Union’s 15th Anniversary End Of The Road Festival on August 31, 2012. Just a few months later, lead vocalist and songwriter Tim Smith announced he was leaving Midlake to form a new project called Harp. Rather than divide the recorded material among the two bands, Midlake abandoned the two years’ worth of recordings with Smith and began again from scratch, writing and recording a new full-length album in just six months.
In August 2013, Midlake announced the release date for their fourth full-length album, Antiphon, due November 5, 2013 on ATO Records in North America and November 4, 2013 on Bella Union in Europe. In a message on the band’s website, Midlake acknowledged Tim Smith’s departure, saying “we’ve pushed ourselves and challenged ourselves and feel that Antiphon represents an ultimate genesis both musically and spiritually.”
Guitarist Eric Pulido steps into the role of lead vocalist on Antiphon, with backing vocals from Alexander and new members Jesse Chandler (keyboards, piano, flute) and Joey McClellan (guitars). “Antiphon is the most honest representation of the band as a whole, as opposed to one person’s vision that we were trying to facilitate,” Pulido remarked in the album’s press release, which characterizes the new music as “free-flowing in feel, concise in structure … it’s very much Midlake, but uncannily rebooted, and relaxed.” Antiphon is more rooted in progressive rock than their earlier records.
In addition to the lineup change, Antiphon marks Midlake’s first release on Dave Matthews’ ATO Records label, also home to My Morning Jacket, Caitlin Rose, and Stars.
Tim Smith is featured on the 2017 Lost Horizons album “Ojala”, having written lyrics for and performing vocals for the song “She Led Me Away”. He also appears on Chemical Brothers’ 2007 album We Are the Night, contributing vocals to the track “The Pills Won’t Help You Now”.
For a reminder, or an introduction – here is Midlake as they were when they performed at Glastonbury 2010.