21 SEP 2018
Tom Thumb Theatre
2A Eastern Esplanade
“MESSY MAJESTY” – 9/10, UNCUT
“DAY-TO-DAY STORIES FULL OF UNCANNY POP PUNK MAGIC” – THE QUIETUS
“WE LOVE THEM” – MARC RILEY, BBC 6 MUSIC
Bas Jan’s earliest songs were initially conceived as Serafina Steer's solo material, until Bas Jan co-founder members Sarah Anderson and Jenny Moore – both of whom have since left the project – triangulated the whole collaboration and, in 2015, the band was born. Currently joining Steer in the new incarnation of Bas Jan are violinist, bassist and vocalist Emma Smith (Meilyr Jones, Seamus Fogarty and founder member of the Elysian Quartet) and drummer and vocalist Rachel Horwood (Trash Kit, Bamboo).
Co-written and performed by Steer, Anderson and Moore, with additional playing from Smith, Yes I Jan is a chronicle of the first two years of the band and the collection of unique personalities which helped shape its unconventional and thrilling sound and energy. Bas Jan is a collaborative project, so each member either made up or elaborated their own part within the initial song structures.
All of the lyrics are by Steer, and they delight in finding hidden humour, resonance and beauty in the mundanity of the everyday, from the weird tedium of getting stuck in an aggressive text message spat, to hungoverly eating fish and chips in the faded seaside splendour of Walton on the Naze, to swaggering the just-got-paid swagger down the Holloway Road. Yes I Jan was recorded at Total Refreshment Centre and Gun Factory studios with the production skills of Capitol K, Leafcutter John and Leo Abrahams.
Serafina Steer is a vocalist, harpist, bassist and keyboard player who has released three critically-acclaimed solo albums – the latest of which, 2013’s The Moths Are Real was produced by Jarvis Cocker – as well as appeared both live and on record with musicians including Lone Taxidermist, Jon Hopkins, Rozi Plain, John T. Gast, Patrick Wolf, Tunng and John Foxx. She sees her practice as much as a social activity as an expressive, technical art and takes an experimental, punk approach to music making.
She seeks to create work that has a free quality and resists categorisation, often arising through the juxtaposition of musical disciplines and genres.