• The Vibe

The Nature Centre unveils first of four lockdown singles with ornithologically-obsessed Birds video

Birmingham avant-pop group The Nature Centre released its latest music video Sunday, in support of upcoming single Birds.

The video, presented in the style of a BBC Video Nation short, sees bassist Oli Pyper play the role of a human ‘care-crow’ in an effort to attract birdlife.

Dressed to the nines in bird feeders and a birdhouse helmet, he stands in wait, while the folk-tinged track tells a separate story of rising tides and perseverance, amidst swelling strings and clarinet.

Birds is the first in a series of four singles to be released over the coming months, all entirely self-recorded and produced by the band, working remotely during COVID-19 lockdown.

Singer and multi-instrumentalist Beth Hopkins explains: “These songs were born from a musical experiment between friends, where participants would add elements to a track before passing it on, like a game of musical consequences.

“With COVID putting a stop to rehearsals, we realised that this game could actually provide a useful framework for continued collaboration as a band.

“What began as a simple experiment in layering, designed to keep lockdown madness at bay, became something surprising and sonically rich. The pressure and freedom of being alone, briefly holding the band's only baby, meant we were encouraging each other to push for eyebrow-raising ideas to inspire the next musical direction.”

The Birds video was helmed by Birmingham director Damien Hyde (Instagram: @damo_hyde), and filmed in accordance with social distancing measures.

Birds will be available to download from Bandcamp on Friday February 5th. It will launch simultaneously on all major streaming services.