Lanterns On The Lake's ‘Spook The Herd’ Nominated for 2020 Mercury Prize — Mastered by Frank Arkwright

Informing us of their intent from the opening line (“stick around when it gets real”), Lanterns On The Lake’s Spook the Herd is a truly ambitious work of art. The Newcastle-upon-Tyne group’s fourth studio album is a breakthrough moment, and rightly rewarded today (23 July) with a prestigious Mercury Music Prize nomination for Album of the Year.

We were delighted to welcome the project into Abbey Road, where it was mastered by the brilliant Frank Arkwright.

Spook The Herd is Lanterns On The Lake's first studio album for six years. Opening with the track When It All Comes True, it's immediately evident that the band have given the nine songs that make up the record space to breathe and allow every subtle nuance in the arpeggiated guitars, bass, drums, viola, and especially Hazel Wilde's voice, to be heard. There's a real intimacy heard throughout the record, opening themselves up to new audiences with the likes of the first two singles Every Atom and Baddies being playlisted by BBC 6 Music.
The album also represents the first time that the band hasn’t recorded in Newcastle, heading to Distant City Studios in West Yorkshire and entrusting guitarist Paul Gregory once again to help them get the album over the line in production terms, as according to the band’s Hazel Wilde, “we are a pretty insular band in how we work, and trusting other people enough to allow them to get involved is not always easy for us.” However, they did complete the finishing touches of the album at Abbey Road, which saw them work with legendary mastering engineer, Frank Arkwright.

Paul from the band spoke to us on their experience of mastering the record at Abbey Road with Frank: "Going to Abbey Road to master had been something we had planned on for all the previous records, but we never quite managed it. After recording the album we were determined to do it. As well as being in Lanterns On The Lake I also work as a mixer, I have a studio in my house and I work from the solitude of the attic. I'd mixed two records by Ben Chatwin, both mastered by Frank Arkwright, when I heard the masters I was totally knocked sideways, it sounded incredible, exactly the kind of thing we wanted. Next thing I know we're booked in."
"...Working with Frank was amazing. I was quite petrified when the tracks started playing, fingers firmly crossed the recording and mixes sounded good enough to warrant taking it there. Frank did the MOST incredible job, and it was fascinating watching him work, we couldn't be happier with the results, and he's such a nice guy! Abbey Road is such an iconic place, to have the opportunity to take our music for the final stages there, and work with Frank was such a huge moment for us, to see all those old tape machines lining the hallway, Studio One, the history of records made and mastered there. Getting the record home and putting it on in the house for the first time and blasting it out and full belt, it sounded the way we had always imagined it should. Thanks again Frank!"
Hazel Wilde from the band says being nominated for the Mercury Price is "emotional, surreal, like a dream come true." We wish them the best of luck for 24 September when the winners will be announced. Take a listen to the record.