These New Puritans

These New Puritans are an English music group/band from Southend-on-Sea, England. It consists mainly of Jack Barnett (principal songwriter, vocalist, producer, multi-instrumentalist) and his twin brother George Barnett (drums, electronics, producer, artwork). Thomas Hein (sampler, keyboards, percussion, bass) was an active member of TNP between 2006 and 2016; Sophie Sleigh-Johnson (keyboards, sampler) was active between 2006 and 2010. They have recorded four studio albums: Beat Pyramid (2008), Hidden (2010), Field of Reeds (2013) and Inside the Rose (2019).

These New Puritans
Background information
OriginSouthend-on-Sea, England
GenresPost-punk, art rock, post-rock, neo-classical music, industrial, experimental[1]
Years active2006–present
LabelsInfectious Music
Angular / Domino (former)
WebsiteOfficial website
MembersJack Barnett
George Barnett
Past membersThomas Hein (2006–2016)
Sophie Sleigh-Johnson (2006–2010)

Their music has been described as "blurring the distinction between rock, classical, electronic and experimental"[2] and as "strikingly modern yet simultaneously timeless."[3]


The Barnett brothers grew up in the Essex town of Southend-on-Sea.[4] Their father was a builder and their mother was an art teacher. George and Jack made music together as children with "karaoke microphones, old bongos and guitars too large for their tiny hands"[5], later focusing on electronic music. They formed the band together with childhood friend Tom Hein, who grew up in nearby Billericay.[6]

In a 2008 interview, Jack Barnett said that hip hop acts Wu-Tang Clan, especially member RZA,[7] Timbaland and J Dilla influenced the first album Beat Pyramid.[8] Other inspirations include the electronic music of Aphex Twin and the cartoon series The Smurfs,[7] though Jack Barnett later suggested this was not serious.[9]

TNP have been described as "falling in the tradition of British outliers that also includes Robert Wyatt, Talk Talk, Bark Psychosis and Scott Walker."[10] Although unusual for a rock group, the band often incorporates the same section of music into different songs as refrains.[11]

Before their second album Hidden was released, Barnett revealed that he had been writing music for bassoon and stated that the aim was for a final product where "dancehall meets Steve Reich".[12] He taught himself musical notation to score the brass and woodwind elements of the album.[13] In a 2010 interview with Jack Barnett, Paul Morley described These New Puritans' new material on Hidden as "very 1970, but also quite 1610, 1950, 1979, 1989, 2005 and 2070".[14] When performing live during the Hidden era they were often accompanied by a five-piece brass-woodwind ensemble.[15] In 2010 they performed a series of full live performances of Hidden (featuring a brass-woodwind ensemble, Taiko drums, children's choir, three vibraphonists and live Foley techniques) entitled Hidden Live, at venues such as the Barbican Centre (featuring the Britten Sinfonia), the Pompidou Centre and Berghain.[16][17] In 2010 the song "We Want War" featured on the Assassin's Creed Brotherhood soundtrack.[18]

In a May 2010 interview with C.B.Liddell, Jack Barnett revealed that he was interested in Melanesian music and that he anticipated that the next TNPS album would be "quieter."[19] Towards the end of 2012 the band remixed "Mutual Core" by Björk, which featured on the remix album Bastards.[20] In June 2013, they released their third album, Field of Reeds, which featured jazz singer Elisa Rodrigues. The video clip for the single Organ Eternal was directed by Willy Vanderperre and featured the acclaimed Belgian actress Line Pillet.[21] Musically Field of Reeds was described as "uncategorizable"[22] and as drawing heavily on avant-garde classical composition.[23] For the "Fragment Two" video, they reunited with Daniel Askill, who'd previously directed "We Want War".[24]

Following Field of Reeds, TNP moved to Berlin and set up in a dilapidated old Soviet broadcasting studio in the industrial suburbs.[25] In 2015 Jack collaborated in the studio with Robert Del Naja of Massive Attack.[26]

These New Puritans returned in November 2018 with the song, "Into the Fire", which was released digitally and as a limited edition flame-coloured 7" single.[27][28] This was followed in January 2019 by a video for "Inside The Rose", made in collaboration with photographer Harley Weir, and the announcement of a new album of the same name. Recorded in Essex, London and Berlin, and mixed in Los Angeles, Inside the Rose was described as "another creative reinvention"[29] and as their most direct and accessible music yet.[30] The album's release was marked with a "happening" event at the Institute of Contemporary Arts, involving a stage set constructed out of slashed silk hung from scaffolding, designed by George Barnett and artist Freya Don.[31] The support act was performance artist Soojin Chang.[32]

After the release of Inside the Rose it was announced that Thomas Hein had departed the group, due to his academic commitments in studying computational neuroscience.[33]


TNPS worked with designer Hedi Slimane and recorded the song "Navigate, Navigate" for the Dior Homme Hiver 2007 show. Both the music and the collection received positive reviews.[34] The band members also took part in an art/dance performance at the Palais de Tokyo in Paris for the after-show of the Stage of the Art. In 2013 Jack Barnett contributed to the Current 93 album I Am the Last of All the Field That Fell: A Channel alongside Nick Cave and Anohni.[35] The next year, TNP soundtracked the first authorised theatrical production of Aldous Huxley's novel Brave New World.[36] In 2017 they were commissioned to write a piece to mark the 70th anniversary of Indian independence from the British Empire.[37]


Studio albums

Live albums

  • EXPANDED (Live at the Barbican) (2014)

Singles and EPs

  • "Now Pluvial" (30 October 2006) – 7"[38]
  • "Navigate, Navigate" (21 May 2007) – 12"/Digital download[39]
  • "Numbers"/"Colours" (5 November 2007) – 7"[40]
  • "Elvis" (21 January 2008) – 7"/CD[41]
  • "Swords of Truth" (5 May 2008) – 7"/12"/Digital Download[42]
  • "We Want War" (11 January 2010) – 10"/Digital Download
  • "Attack Music" (12 April 2010) – Digital Download
  • "Hologram" (26 July 2010)
  • "White Chords" (2010)
  • "Fragment Two" (2013) – CD, Single, Promo
  • "Organ Eternal" (2013) – CD, Single, Promo
  • "V (Island Song)" (2013) – CD, Single, Promo
  • "Magnetic Field" (2013) – 12", Ltd, Num
  • "Into the Fire" (2018) - 7"

Music videos

  • Elvis (2008)
  • Swords of Truth (2008)
  • We Want War (2010)
  • Attack Music (2010)
  • Hologram (2010)
  • Fragment Two (2012)
  • Organ Eternal (2013)
  • V (Island Song) (2013)
  • Inside the Rose (2019)
  • Where the Trees Are on Fire (2019)
  • Six (2019)

Compilation albums

These New Puritans have contributed songs to the following CD compilations:

  • "Chamber" – Digital Penetration (September 2006)
  • "I Want to Be Tracey Emin" – Future Love Songs (December 2006)
  • "Elvis" (demo) – Dance Floor Distortion (December 2006)
  • "Colours" – 2000 Trees: Cider Smiles Vol. 1 (Hide and Seek Records, June 2008)


  1. "These New Puritans". These New Puritans. Retrieved 22 March 2019.
  2. Moody, Paul (18 March 2019). "These New Puritans speak on their experimental ICA event". Another Man. Retrieved 20 July 2019.
  3. Idelji-Tehrani, Saam (13 March 2019). "These New Puritans dream forwards on the astonishing Inside The Rose". The Line of Best Fit. Retrieved 20 July 2019.
  4. Kinney, Bunny (19 February 2014). "These New Puritans Rip It Up and Start Again". Paper Magazine. Retrieved 19 July 2019.
  5. Monroe, Jazz (March 2019). "Q Maverick". Q Magazine.
  6. "These New Puritans Rip It Up and Start Again". 19 February 2014.
  7. "Breaking Artist: These New Puritans". Rolling Stone. 7 May 2008.
  8. Photos by Harley Weir (2 March 2010). "Best of What's Next: These New Puritans :: Features :: Paste". Retrieved 23 May 2011.
  9. Moody, Paul (8 June 2017). "Sonic Universe". AnotherMan. Retrieved 19 July 2019.
  10. "Best of 2013 New Releases". Uncut Magazine. January 2014.
  11. "Merry Swankster: May 2008 Archives". Archived from the original on 23 June 2009. Retrieved 7 February 2016.
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  13. Kinney, Fergal (March 2019). "The constant unpredictability of Jack and George Barnett". Loud and Quiet.
  14. "Paul Morley talks to These New Puritans". The Guardian. London. 22 January 2010. Retrieved 25 May 2010.
  15. "These New Puritans – "Hologram" | Vice Music Blog". 11 February 2010. Archived from the original on 7 August 2011. Retrieved 23 May 2011.
  16. "These New Puritans with the Britten Sinfonia + Darkstar". Barbican. 23 October 2010. Archived from the original on 1 March 2013. Retrieved 2 July 2013.
  17. Dorian Lynskey (24 October 2010). "These New Puritans with the Britten Sinfonia – review | Music". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 2 July 2013.
  18. "These New Puritans Endorce Assassin's Creed Brotherhood - Music Snobbery". 15 September 2010. Retrieved 22 March 2019.
  19. "Arts & Entertainment | These New Puritans". Metropolis. 20 May 2010. Retrieved 23 May 2011.
  20. "Stream Björk's Biophilia Remix Album With Death Grips, Hudson Mohawke, These New Puritans, More | News". Pitchfork. 12 November 2012. Retrieved 2 July 2013.
  21. "BBC Radio 1 – Zane Lowe, Classic Deadmau5 live, These New Puritans – Fragment Two". 7 May 2013. Retrieved 2 July 2013.
  22. "Pop, rock and jazz". The Sunday Times. 9 June 2013.
  23. "Best of 2103 New Releases". Uncut Magazine. January 2014.
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  25. Kinney, Fergal (March 2019). "The constant unpredictability of Jack and George Barnett". Loud and Quiet.
  26. Morgan Britton, Luke (15 October 2015). "These New Puritans Talk New Music, Soviet Propaganda And Working With Massive Attack". NME. Retrieved 19 July 2019.
  27. David Renshaw (7 November 2018). "These New Puritans return with "Into The Fire"". The Fader. Retrieved 8 November 2018.
  28. Eede, Christian (8 November 2018). "New These New Puritans". The Quietus. Retrieved 23 November 2018.
  29. Monroe, Jazz (March 2019). "Q Maverick". Q Magazine.
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  31. Moody, Paul (18 March 2019). "These New Puritans Speak On Their Experimental ICA Event". Another Man. Retrieved 19 July 2019.
  32. "21-MARCH-2019 : INSIDE THE ROSE : A PUBLIC VIEW : LIVE AT THE ICA". These New Puritans. Retrieved 7 October 2019.
  33. Harrison, Angus (March 2019). "Dream Forwards". Crack Magazine.
  34. Archived 14 March 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  35. Minsker, Evan (6 November 2013). "Current 93's Next Album Features Nick Cave, Antony, These New Puritans' Barnett". Pitchfork. Retrieved 19 July 2019.
  36. Monroe, Jazz (10 September 2015). "Enslaved by Our Own Fallibility, Weakness and Desire - I Suppose Aldous Huxley Was Right". Vice. Retrieved 19 July 2019.
  37. "Audiovisual project Different Trains 1947 celebrates 70 years of Indian independence". The Wire. 1 June 2017.
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  39. "Angular website – catalogue". Archived from the original on 7 July 2011. Retrieved 23 May 2011.
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