Indie duo Everything But The Girl are back with "Fuse".

Tracey Thorn and Ben Watt don't have much to lose, as the title of the first single released from their new album suggests.

Indie duo Everything But The Girl are back with "Fuse".

Tracey Thorn and Ben Watt don't have much to lose, as the title of the first single released from their new album suggests. But the song "Nothing Left To Lose", which the British indie pop duo Everything But The Girl released back in January, quickly won the hearts of critics and old and new fans alike.

So there could be a lot to gain with their first record in 24 years. Or as Thorn says in an interview with the German Press Agency: "I assume we'll get away with it."

When the album "Fuse" is released on April 21, it will be almost a quarter of a century since the couple last released a record together. A long time. And the two heads behind Everything But The Girl probably didn't expect to make music together again.

Professional separate ways

When the two decided at the turn of the millennium, at the peak of their careers at the time, to give up the Everything But The Girl project, it wasn't a dramatic split like many other bands have experienced. Rather, life came between Tracey Thorn and Ben Watt: the two started a family and raised their children. They remained a couple, but went their separate ways professionally.

"We tried to separate our lives a little bit. We had home life and we were a couple, we were parents but we had separate work projects. We decided it might not be very healthy to do everything together," they say in the interview.

Today things are different again: the children are out of the house, both have written books and pursued solo projects: Watt was active as a DJ in the club scene, Thorn wrote a regular column for the magazine "New Statesman".

Corona has changed a lot

Ultimately, it was the pandemic that ignited the crucial spark for the surprising revival. "Covid brought everything to a standstill," says Watt. He himself had to cancel a tour and barricaded himself at home as much as possible because of an autoimmune disease. "It was pretty tough," both agree. "But when we got to the other end, we looked at each other and asked: What now? How do we pick up where we left off? Or have we changed? Do we want to do something different?"

It was Thorn who finally suggested trying again as a duo. "I noticed that she's right. If we don't do it now, we probably never will," recalls Watt (60), who initially had doubts and initially only called the project TREN ("Tracey and Ben"). ) wanted to start to avoid pressure.

And so "Fuse" was born - an album with ten songs, which the couple emphasizes that, despite its history, it is not a lockdown album because the recordings would not have taken place until spring 2022.

Anyone who knows Everything But The Girl from the 80s and 90s, when both established themselves as permanent fixtures on the British indie scene and landed a world hit with "Missing" thanks to the remix by New York producer and DJ Todd Terry, will recognize her - especially the expressive voice of Thorn. With songs like "Caution To The Wind" but also "Nothing Left To Lose" this hovers over an atmospheric, electronic carpet of sound. Faster pieces alternate with melancholic songs like "Run A Red Light" with piano sounds.

Again and again it is about new beginnings, about the desire to seize the moment, to connect with people and to get closer to them. Looking back, Thorn can see there's a lot of lockdown sentiment in there as well. "We dreamed of going out. We dreamed of meeting people and getting closer to them."

Like a new beginning

The collaboration with her partner was familiar, but also felt like a new beginning, says the 60-year-old musician. "It doesn't feel like a step backwards, but like something new. We're different people now - much older, with a lot more life experience." The long break is probably also their secret to working together successfully as a couple, says Thorn.

Whether there will be more to hear from the band after the comeback album remains to be seen. "We want to enjoy and appreciate the moment. This is our baby in the moment that gets all our attention." They are currently living from week to week - and don't want to rule anything out either. "When we're over 80, we're going to make a dance record that packs a punch," Thorn quips, laughing out loud.