Nottingham’s Six By Seven hit the scene in the late ’90s with a blend of psych/Kraut/post/punk/prog/space-rock that was timeless yet completely out of step with the musical trends of the times. Their 1998 debut The Things We Make was a study in drone and tension and the 2000 follow-up, The Closer You Get, remains one of the straight-up angriest – yet beautiful in its way – records of the day. It it still to my eternal regret that I was out of the country for their only Toronto show in June 2000 at The Horseshoe; I thought they were so good, there was no way I wouldn’t get another shot. I did not.
After three records on Beggars imprint Mantra, the band went independent and began selling records direct to fans, which I kept up with for a while – 2004’s :04 is an epic – but as the band split and reunited (multiple times?) and main man Chris Olley kept putting out more music under a variety of names and channels, the prolificness (and cost) got too much and I just lost track. It did help that Olley eventually allowed their work onto streaming services though what’s there is far from complete.
The band’s Mantra records were compiled in 2017 for the tongue-in-cheek Greatest Hits and The Closer You Get given a double-vinyl reissue; as part of the campaign, a 20-minute documentary film on the band was released.