Straight off the back of supporting Depeche Mode on the EU leg of their ‘Memento Mori’ tour, acclaimed Berlin dark indie-pop band Hope share their new album ‘NAVEL’, out everywhere now.

Sonically, Imagine Portishead formed in Berlin today. Joseph Beuys comes along, shreds the band with a coarse wire brush, and exhibits them in a dark, 100 foot high silo for the production of artificial icebergs. The resulting Gesamtkunstwerk may well be a close approximation of Hope.

Opening with a driving, almost sinister percussion and synths, the new single ‘Navel’ explores the vastness of a painful relationship. Still bearing traces of their wilder post-punk debut, and highly prone to thrill lovers of Massive Attack, Billie Holiday and Joy Division alike, it foreshadows the reduced, utterly vulnerable and deep sound of their upcoming album.

Made up of lead singer Christine Börsch-Supan, guitarist Phillip Staffa, keyboardist Martin Knorz and drummer Fabian Hönes, their new album is an exercise in vulnerability. The four musicians shed the walls of sound they once built around themselves, and show what’s behind the barricades: they are gentle, approachable and fallible. Music News caught up with HOPE to find out more...

Tell us about your new album ‘NAVEL’
Navel is our second album, and it has been a long journey for us, a process of much skin-shedding and arriving with a music none of us had ever expected.

How would you describe your sound?
It’s minimal and reduced, sober, yet poetic. At least that’s what I hope for it to be…

Tell us about the songwriting process for the album
The music of “Navel” evolved from the retreat of the Covid years, from coming together and as a band in times of isolation. To write and play new songs, hone in on the material by ourselves, with no momentum of live shows and an audience. I can hear and feel this on the new record, this more inward pulling energy. The songs are mainly written in southern France, rehearsed and recorded in Berlin.
Some of the lyrics came before our process as a band, some alongside with it, They spring out of the process of recovering from an addiction - the struggles, questions, beginning answers, accepting, coming to terms that I needed to face.

How does this music differ from your last album and why the shift?
It feels like we are coming to terms with a certain attitude of noise and loudness, a lot of anger as well, that we pursued in our first album. We felt the need to strip ourselves from that, to let what remains be heard and seen: fragility, clarity, space for the voice, words, delicacy in melodies. We wanted to make ourselves vulnerable in that way.

What's next for you?
We enjoyed the recent first concerts in which we played ‚Navel‘ live and would love to develop the music, play around with it, let it grow - stuff that happens only live. We want to write new songs as well, see where the sound goes next.

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