One of the great independent musical success stories of the year in the UK is that of Public Service Broadcasting. Let’s be clear that when we state success we mean both artistically (their debut album Inform Educate Entertain is innovative, unique and has a sense of being beyond fashion) and commercially (it managed to find itself in the UK Top 40 on release, which for a relatively ‘small’ band is some achievement).
Yet despite their accomplishments Public Service Broadcasting haven’t sat back on their laurels. No, this duo have spent what seems like the whole year on the road and it doesn’t stop yet, having just played some shows with the Manic Street Preachers before they set out on yet another headline tour of their own.
Public Service Broadcasting is a lesson to every band who spends more time p*ssing around on the internet trying to get Facebook likes than writing, recording or performing. The learning point is simple - Facebook likes are undemanding to give and utterly transient. Real fans invest in a band by coming to shows and buying the band’s music and by telling other people about what they’re missing out on. If as an artist you’re not growing that real tangible fan base, you’re doing something wrong. Public Service Broadcasting have developed real fans by concentrating on the writing, recording and performing – the promotion and social media then almost becomes organic. In the old days they called it word of mouth.
With the endless gigs comes the release of another song from Inform Educate Entertain. Night Mail combines words from a 1936 documentary and a W.H Arden poem, meshing them seamlessly to the Public Service Broadcasting mix of guitars and electronics that pulse and rock creating a tune to lose yourself in. You really don’t need the video for Night Mail – shut your eyes and the soundtrack places you in one of those carriages steaming along, taking the letters and bags of mail all over the country, but it's nice to see J. Willgoose and Wrigglesworth make an appearance in their own video for once.
Public Service Broadcasting - Night Mail (Video)