These New Puritans (sometimes abbreviated to TNPS) are a British art rock band from the Southend-on-Sea area. The group consists of Jack Barnett (songwriter, producer, vocalist, multi-instrumentalist), his twin brother George Barnett (drums, loops), Thomas Hein (bass guitar, sampler, drums), and Sophie Sleigh-Johnson (keyboards, sampler). They have recorded two albums, "Beat Pyramid", released in 2008, and "Hidden", released in 2010.
In a 2008 interview, Jack Barnett said that hip hop ensemble Wu-Tang Clan, especially member RZA, influenced the first album "Beat Pyramid". Other inspirations include the electronic music of Aphex Twin and the cartoon series The Smurfs. At the time, "Artrocker" described These New Puritans as sounding like "Sheffield and Berlin synths, '90s alt rock Sonic Youth and Yo La Tengo drones, Underworld beats; and all in the most contemporary of contexts". Although unusual for a rock group, the band often incorporates the same section of music into different songs as refrains.
Before second album "Hidden" was released, Jack Barnett revealed that he had been writing music for bassoon and stated that the aim was for a final product where "dancehall meets Steve Reich". In a 2010 interview with Barnett, Paul Morley described These New Puritans' new material as "very 1970, but also quite 1610, 1950, 1979, 1989, 2005 and 2070". When performing live they are sometimes accompanied by a five-piece brass-woodwind ensemble. In a May 2010 interview with C.B.Liddell, Jack Barnett revealed that he is now interested in Melanesian music and anticipates that the next TNPS album will be "quieter." In August 2010 they announced a series of full live performances of "Hidden", entitled "Hidden Live", at venues such as the Barbican Centre (featuring the Britten Sinfonia), the Pompidou Centre and Berghain.
Along with other Southend artists, These New Puritans played at the Experimental Circle Club and Chinnery's, responsible for popularising the local music scene. The band has had support slots for Crystal Castles, British Sea Power, The Kills, Blood Red Shoes, Klaxons, and The xx.
These New Puritans worked with designer Hedi Slimane and recorded the song "Navigate, Navigate" for the "Dior Homme Hiver 2007" show. Both the music and the collection received positive reviews. The band members also took part in an art/dance performance at the Palais de Tokyo in Paris for the after-show of the Stage of the Art.
Official Website: http://www.thesenewpuritans.com/
MySpace page: www.myspace.com/thesenewpuritans/