Photo credit: Lauren Maccabee
The Isle of Wight brothers Michael and David Champion of CHAMPS returned with two new singles earlier this week. The tracks, Solid Action” and “Douglas Firs,” produced/mixed by Sean Oakley, precede an EP titled The Hard Interchange to be released later this spring.
This is the third project from the duo, who released their debut album Down Like Gold in 2013 and second album Vamala in 2015. In the years since their last release, the brothers spent time writing, recording and ultimately leaving the Isle of Wight to immerse themselves in the London music scene. It was in the East End where they ran into American producer Sean Oakley and felt immediate creative chemistry. The three committed to executing a vision and between the stone walls of a monastery-turned studio called Chale Abbey, The Hard Interchange was created.
Solid Action” is the lead track on the EP and speaks of the first time Michael witnessed someone injecting heroin. He recalls the moment at an underground club in Berlin during one of their early tours—“it was done with such jovial determination and control, a very ‘Solid Action,’ ‘the nonchalance really affected me.’” Listen/share “Solid Action” HERE.
Douglas Firs” follows, as the second track on the EP. Listen/share “Douglas Firs” HERE.
CHAMPS’ first two records were admired by fans and critics alike. “Vamala,” the lead track on the album of the same name has racked up over four million Spotify streams since its release. Outlets like The Independent and Q magazine have published soaring reviews. Additionally, Lauren Laverne, Huw Stephens and Tom Ravenscroft of U.K. Radio have voiced their support.
The Guardian agrees, “The Isle of Wight duo have some effective pop tricks up their sleeve.”
“Solid Action” artwork                                                   “Douglas Firs” artwork