The Nation's Most Central Location album cover

The Nation’s Most Central Location

The fourth Warrington-Runcorn New Town Development Plan album, The Nation’s Most Central Location, will be released on 19 May 2023. This album sees Gordon Chapman-Fox (the man behind Warrington-Runcorn New Town Development Plan) explore the north-south divide and reflect on 40 years of broken ‘levelling up’ promises.

With eight tracks across 40 minutes, the album offers Gordon’s usual mix of mournful remorse and upbeat optimism. Gordon has now added an underlying anger that burns through on tracks such as London’s Moving Our Way and A Brighter And More Prosperous Future.

The album title and the track ‘London’s Moving Our Way’ come from a 1980s TV advert asking businesses to relocate to Warrington and Runcorn, but it also reflects that, while the geographical centre of the UK is in the North, everything still flows to London.

“I am, admittedly, a Northerner with a colossal chip on my shoulder,” says Gordon, as he explains the album’s theme. “But it’s not really about London or Londoners. It’s more the political systems and flows of money that have all drained to the South – and from there into offshore trusts – that are the issue.”

The overtly political mood comes to the fore on this album because it was written against a backdrop of Boris Johnson trying to deflect from the Partygate enquiries by talking about his ‘Levelling Up’ agenda. Understandably, feelings of anger and bitterness have seeped in, diluting the the optimism of the first two Warrington-Runcorn albums, and last year’s more socially-distanced Districts, Roads, Open Space.

ALBUM OF THE YEAR
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The carefully contrived atmosphere is of both optimism and dread. 8/10
Uncut
‘The Nation’s Most Central Location’ is his ‘Network’ moment. This is Gordon Chapman-Fox. He’s mad as hell. And he does it brilliantly.
Moonbuilding
A dark wedge of foreboding ambience, a rumble of incessant synth traffic.
Electronic Sound

Tracklisting

No. Song title Length
A01 Just Off The M56 (J12) 3m 06s
A02 Rocksavage 5m 37s
A03 Daresbury Laboratory 4m 52s
A04 London’s Moving Our Way 7m 13s
B05 Thelwall Viaduct 4m 38s
B06 Europa Boulevard 7m 05s
B07 Busway 3m 14s
B08 A Brighter And More Prosperous Future 4m 13s

Vinyl pressings

Pressing Date Description Copies
First pressing May 2023 Bright orange vinyl 1,200 copies
First pressing May 2023 Transparent orange vinyl 400 copies
First pressing May 2023 Smokey orange vinyl 400 copies
Second pressing October 2023 Solid white vinyl 1,100 copies
Second pressing October 2023 Ice blue vinyl 700 copies
Second pressing October 2023 Black vinyl 200 copies