Named after the musical term for the measurement of time by an instrument, Metronomy is the dance-meets-rock project of London-based multi-instrumentalist and producer Joseph Mount. The initial live incarnation of Metronomy also included keyboardist/saxophonist Oscar Cash and keyboardist/bassist Gabriel Stebbing, who soon both became fully integrated members of the band. Prior to Metronomy, Mount and Stebbing played together in bands such as the Upsides, a pop group the pair described as "the original Busted," and the Customers, with whom they played in university.
Using an old computer that his father gave him, Mount started Metronomy in 1990 as a side project to the other bands he played with. When his cousin Cash joined Metronomy, it became the trio's main project. With a sound inspired by everyone from Devo and David Bowie to N.E.R.D. and Pavement, Metronomy earned buzz for their engaging live shows as well as official and unofficial remixes of tracks by Gorillaz, Architecture in Helsinki, Sebastien Tellier, Kate Nash, U2, and Britney Spears. Their debut single, "You Could Easily Have Me," arrived in spring 2005 on the Holiphonic imprint, and the full-length Pip Paine (Pay the £5000 You Owe) was released that summer.
In 2006, Metronomy signed to Because Music; the following year, "Radio Ladio" became their first and only release on its Need Now Future imprint. The label also issued 2008's Nights Out, which introduced their eclectic sound to a wider audience thanks to singles such as Radio Ladio, Heartbreaker and My Heart Rate Rapid. In 2009, Stebbing left Metronomy to focus on his other project, Your Twenties. Bassist Gbenga Adelekan and former Lightspeed Champion drummer Anna Prior joined the fold for 2011's The English Riviera, which boasted a sleeker sound than the band's previous work. It was their most significant success to date, reaching number 28 on the U.K. charts, selling more than 60,000 copies, and earning them a Mercury Prize nomination. The album's popularity led to a sold-out show at Royal Albert Hall as well as comprehensive tours of both Europe and North America.
Not content to rest on his laurels, however, Mount was determined to push his limits and set himself the challenge of recording his next album at Toe Rag, an all-analog London studio more commonly used by indie rock bands such as the White Stripes, the Zutons, and the Cribs. Inventively fusing modern electronics with vintage recording techniques, the resulting warm-sounding Love Letters was slated for release in March 2014. It took inspiration from acts such as the Supremes, the Zombies, and Sly & the Family Stone, while still retaining the forward-looking approach of Metronomy's previous album projects.