This is an archive of the band profile for The Housekeeping Society.
The Housekeeping Society is a West Yorkshire-based folk-pop band featuring Ric Neale, Spencer Bayles and Ivan Mack.
Their second album 'Postcards' is a song cycle that takes as its central theme the English seaside, from its glory days as the ultimate summer destination to its decline in the face of cheap foreign holidays. It sees the band continue to indulge in their love of story-telling, setting folk narratives to contemporary arrangements; subject matter veers from storm-bound fishermen, those lost at sea and those left to pick through the wreckage, through to lighter selections such as wistfully expectant B&B owners and the tale of Lobby Lud, the 'seaside mystery man' invented by the Westminster Gazette in the 1930s.
The songs are underpinned by samples and loops created from found sounds the band gathered on research trips to Scarborough and Whitby.
The new album comes just a year after their acclaimed debut 'This Way To Power', which was informed by stories of late 19th Century northern mill-town communities, and featured loops created from sounds of period machinery recorded at Styal Mill in Cheshire.
The band had been inspired by the idea of how mill owners surrounded their newly-built workplaces with affordable housing and schools to attract workers, and how, as a result, many generations would naturally carry on living and working in the same place as their parents and grandparents. In contrast, Ric, Spence and Ivan all moved away from their home towns to go to University, ending up staying where they studied. This was a position those previous generations mostly wouldn't have had the option of taking, and as such seemed an interesting situation to write stories about.
The trio have worked together musically for a number of years, including stints playing Ric's solo material, and some of Spence's songs under the name The March Greens. Spence's other musical outlets include the bands Last Night's TV and Luxe In, both of which have enjoyed Radio 2 and 6 Music airplay..