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Free Speech

Nothing But Thieves’ Joe Langridge-Brown on the Value of Full-Length Albums

British rockers went the concept record route with 2023's Dead Club City
Joe Langridge-Brown (Photo credit: Max Sharp)

Joe Langridge-Brown, guitarist from British rock band Nothing But Thieves, knows that music is a uniting force in our polarized society. He had fresh perspective on that subject backstage at Louder Than Life, with his band having just finished a set.

“You realize that what you have in a room or in a field is a group of people that probably don’t agree on everything,” he told SPIN. “But [there’s] one thing that unites that group of people—together they like a certain band or they like a certain genre of music. It’s kind of healing and good to remember.”

That same principle extends to the album format. NBT’s latest, 2023’s Dead Club City, is a concept record, which Langridge-Brown recognizes is a fading art in this single-heavy era. However, he argues that full-length albums have just as much value as ever.

“I think we have a single[-focused] culture more than we ever have,” Langridge-Brown says. “But if you really get down to the bones of what a fan relates to—and how I can see music, and if I look at my favorite artists and bands—I think you want something at a deeper level that explains a lot more. I think that’s why an album still has a purpose now. That’s why we wrote a concept album this time around: because I still believe in that.”