Mogwai picture by Steve Gullick
A mere matter of months since the career-spanning Central Belters compilation, Mogwai have unveiled details of a new album.
Atomic will be released on April 1. The album is composed of reworked versions of the music recorded by the band for the soundtrack to director Mark Cousin’s acclaimed documentary Atomic: Living In Dread and Promise, which was first shown on BBC Four last summer. Constructed entirely of archive film, Atomic is an impressionistic kaleidoscope of the horrors of our nuclear times – protest marches, Cold War sabre-rattling, Chernobyl and Fukishima – but also the sublime beauty of the atomic world, and how x-rays and MRI scans have improved human lives.
Director Cousins says of the film: “I’m a child of the nuclear age, and in my teens I had nightmares about the bomb. But physics was my favourite subject in school, and I nearly studied it at university. Learning about the atomic world excited me. It was like abstract Star Wars.”
Meanwhile Mogwai leader Stuart Braithwaite says ‘The Atomic soundtrack is one of the most intense and fulfilling projects we’ve taken on as a band. Ever since we went to Hiroshima to play and visited the peace park this has been a subject very close to us. The end results, both the film score and the record are pieces I’m extremely proud of.’
It’s not the first time Mogwai have tackled soundtrack work, having been responsible for the scores to both French TV series Les Revenants (The Returned) and Zidane: A 21st Century Portrait.
The tracklisting for Atomic is as follows:
3. Bitterness Centrifuge
6. Weak Force
7. Little Boy
8. Are You A Dancer?
10. Fat man
The first track to be heard from the album ‘U-235’ can be streamed below: