Archive for May, 2006
The Boom Boom Bap is the first single from the new Scritti Politti album White Bread Black Beer. The CD Single contains the album version and 2 new tracks, no remixes.
Ever since BBC 6 played it for the first time in december of last year, this melodious ballad has been going round in my head. It was the first we heard from Green Gartside since Anomie & Bonhomie in 1999, and what a treat it is. The Boom Boom Bap is a honeysweet song, showing all the beauty that Green is able to bring about with his voice and his sound, following the line of Brushed with oil, dusted with powder. A beauty, a minimal jewel.
The b-side features 2 new songs. The last time I looked, is a fine song in the line of White Bread Black Beer. Remarkable are the recurring “nashville” guitar chords and the interesting lyrics. “The next time I look I will be a long way from here, by the tree of cocaine, near the river of beer”. Please show me where that place is. In the middle of this song there is a mysterious woman counting down from seven to zero, in French. Excellent. The second new song on the single is Hands up, an uptempo rap track, fierce & intense, featuring a rapper called Skillz (from Virginia ?) I am not sure if this is the man, I googled him up. Anyway, he wants us to put our mothafuckin’ hands up and keep em there. To me his voice sounds a bit like Emenim (hope I don’t insult Skillz with that). No Green vocals on this track, i guess it’s produced, mixed and music played by Green. I played this track a couple of times, it grows on you. Nice one.
Release date Europe 19-06-2006
Update (Marco – May 31, 2006): I have uploaded higher quality scans, simply click on the images for larger versions
Using babelfish, a dictionary and my highschool german i managed to translate an interview by Tom Venker on intro.de. Some sentences were hard to get right, and i’m not sure i succeeded. In spite of what you might think, dutch is very different from german, so i didn’t get it all at once. I first put the whole thing through babelfish, which made its amusing literal translation. The one that will stay with me for a long time is skirt music (Rock Musik!).
The biggie for me in this article is that Green talks about a second single, a collaboration with Mad Skills who is known for his work on Rawkus Records.
Enjoy the article, and I apologize in advance for some weird english, but i think i got the general direction right.
It is 29 years ago that Tom Morley and Green Gartside, two London artstudents, brought Scritti Politti into being. The project, trained and lived between squats and sociological and philosophical discussions, developed rapidly from Punk into arty, reggae and funk-inspired postpunk to what would enter as 1982 pop history: ‘Songs to Remember’ is called the soulfull intellectual pop communist manifest of the year. Afterwards the ways of the founding members parted, Gartside worked alone on the constant change of Scritti Politti – and with increasing distance between lifesigns: from synthpop and hiphop to the current puristic gitar pop album ‘White Bread Black Beer’.
[ Green Gartside looks interested at the iPod with microphone ]
One can probably attach the times of your music, due to the long phases between the albums, at the recording devices the journalists use: from taperecorder to minidisc to iPod.
You could say that, but many still use happily the same devices. Yesterday for example I saw the old Sony walkman again twice.
You had your first live appearance quietly and secretly after 26 years in a pub in south London, under the alias Double G and The Traitorous 3. Others, if they had such a legendary status as Scritti Politti, would have booked a high profile comeback route. Why so?
It’s simply because of the fact that to me the whole Scritti Politti thing is still somewhat unpleasant. Above all, concerning live gigs: I wasn’t sure if I could do it, I wasn’t sure, if it would work. Therefore the other name offered itself. I have to say that it’s not perfect musically, since we are not so experienced yet, but it was fun. From there we will probably become Scritti Politti quite soon.
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Blimey! That’s 27 years ago, I was a 15 year old listening to The Police, Nina Hagen and The Specials. I didn’t know Scritti Politti, or that they were playing live all over Europe. Roger Holmes had more sense and saw Scritti Politti play in The Okie Dokie. He even still has the poster!
He still remembers:
The gig was actually moved from The Ratinger Hoff in Dusseldorf old town to The Okie Dokie in Dusseldorf suburb Neuss on 09. april ’79. (At The Rat, as we called it, I also saw bands like X.T.C., 999 and Wayne County before he became Jayne County).
Can’t remember the set-list except the one with the german poet. It was afterall 27 yrs ago, and the set was pretty much improvised around loose themes like Skank Bloc and Spitalfields.
Green appeared very tall because of his enormous (black) hair. Pre-Cure/Bob Smith scruffiness.
Recall talking to dreadlocked-drummer Tom Morley wondering why Scritti were support to Red Crayola. Apparently they took turns at headlining.
Some people were lucky enough to win a signed copy of White Bread Black Beer on Mark Radcliffe’s show last tuesday, and Andrew James was one of them. He kindly let us show some artwork here on bibbly-o-tek.
That just looks great!
We’re rapidly approaching the release of the cd, and reviews are starting to show up more and more. This little bit caught my eye:
Itâ€™s a spring thing, a blossoming thing, a journey through the valleys and across the peaks of the artistâ€™s own domestic landscape as he stops inverting the violent hierarchies of popular culture and comes to terms with more practical issues like the next glass of beer or the next loaf of bread. Sounds still rub and collide as frequently his syntax shifts, but with the dispersal of the clouds that masked his vision, and the recession of expectations comes a more satisfying sense of self. Itâ€™s both a road to no regret and a record of his undoing. And itâ€™s all very, very beautifully unravelled.
from Crud Magazine
If you find any other reviews we have missed, please add in the comments.
Wow, really? Yes, it is :)
Thanks to John!
The new album weaves together elements of everything Gartside has ever loved and revisits every stage of his nearly five decades-long journey through music. The Beatles are here, there and everywhere on the record; T. Rex and the Plastic Ono Band meld on the deliciously stompy anti-Jesus ditty After Six; Gartside’s pre-punk passion for folk-rock and traditional English music is audible in his guitar playing; and there is hip-hop in the beats and R&B in the production’s gloss.
We’re quite chuffed bibbly-o-tek is linked at the bottom of the article!
In an hour and a half Scritti Politti will play live on BBC Radio 2 in the Mark Radcliffe show. This time it’s not only Green with a guitar, but the whole band. The newsletter from the Double G website says:
We’re currently travelling up the M6 to Manchester. We’ll be performing a few songs live on Mark Radcliffe’s show on BBC Radio 2 tonight (that’s Tuesday) at 10.30pm.
Watch this space for our capture of the event!
Great session, lovely interview. Songs played are Snow In Sun, Robin Hood and Road To No Regret.
A positive review from The Observer on White Bread, Black Beer.
White Bread, Black Beer marks a welcome return to the more specific intellectual concerns of his earlier lyrics (but the subtly nutritious ‘Cooking’ boasts unexpected swearing), and a simultaneous rediscovery of the pure pop sensibility which made his later, more mainstream work so addictive.
This evening on May 20th Green had an interview with Gary Crowley on BBC London radio. During the interview four songs were played from White Bread, Black Beer, The Boom Boom Bap, Snow In Sun, Dr. Abernathy and Road To No Regret. The interview itself wasn’t really in depth, at least, i didn’t hear any revelations. Apart from the little fact that Green went to see Brian Wilson play live. Seems now that the official release date for the album is May 29th. The single is due sometime in June.
BBC Gary Crowley interview (68 mb – 45 minutes)
Nonesuch Records Announces Release of Scritti Politti’s
First New Record in Seven Years, in Conjunction with UK’s Rough Trade Records
White Bread Black Beer to be released in North America on July 25
“Simply ignoring the possibility of 1980s nostalgia, he instead unveils a talent as unclassifiable and as undimmed as ever.”-The Independent (UK)
“In an era when any former pop star still breathing – and even some that aren’t – is liable to make a comeback, the reappearance of Scritti Politti, one of the 80s’ most influential bands, still has the power to startle.”-The Guardian (UK)
“His best material since Cupid? Indisputably. His best album, ever? Looking more likely with every listen.”-Simon Reynolds, author of the acclaimed post-punk history Rip It Up and Start Again
Nonesuch Records announces the July 25 release of the first new record in seven years from UK band Scritti Politti, which is helmed by singer/songwriter Green Gartside-White Bread Black Beer. (The album will be released in the UK May 29 by Rough Trade Records.)
Green Gartside formed Scritti Politti (an alteration of the Italian words for “political writings”) in 1977 after being inspired by a Sex Pistols show. The band members, who lived in a communal squat in Camden, were not musically trained, but were devoted to studying Marxist theory and applying it to their art. They released only a few records in the late 70s before Gartside collapsed after a live show in 1980 with the Gang of Four (from a mixture of stage fright and other demons), seemingly ending his stage career, and, temporarily, his band.
He re-emerged in 1982 with Songs to Remember, Scritti Politti’s first full-length album, which gave evidence of Gartside’s increasing fascination with pop styles-especially the aching, beautiful single “The “Sweetest” Girl”. That was followed by 1985’s Cupid & Psyche 85, a landmark album that has inspired pop musicians for two decades since. Gartside’s songs from that album topped the transatlantic charts with hits such as “Perfect Way” (covered by Miles Davis) and “Wood Beez”, both of which also got heavy airplay on MTV. Davis admired Gartside’s songwriting enough to play on the 1988 follow up to Cupid, Provision.
After a long silence, Gartside resurfaced in 1999 with the hip-hop infused Anomie & Bonhomie (released in the U.S. in 2000). Throughout this time, neither Gartside nor Scritti Politti performed live.
After 26 years, Gartside began performing again early this year, with a handful of sold out shows in the UK. In these small club dates, he has been unveiling songs from the new Scritti Politti record, White Bread Black Beer, which will be released by Nonesuch/Rough Trade in North America on July 25, 2006. Time Out London said,”Green’s gorgeous, candy coloured voice still sounds exquisite.” Scritti Politti’s first-ever North American concert dates also are being planned.
# # # #
Some specifics on the forthcoming releases ; the album is still due 05-06, the release of the single has been delayed until 12-06 or possibly even 19-06. The track list for WBBB remains a bit of a mystery, according to Rough Trade Holland the LP contains the same number of tracks as the CD. A quick look at web retailers learns that the LP is mostly being advertised as 13 tracks, while most displayed cd’s contain 14 tracks. So what will happen to After Six ? We will keep you updated.
These are the catalogue details :
Scritti Politti White Bread, Black Beer
RTRADCD270 CD 5050159827022
Scritti Politti White Bread, Black Beer
RTRADLP270 LP 5050159827015
Scritti Politti Boom Boom Bap
RTRADSCD345 CDS 5050159834501
Scritti Politti Boom Boom Bap
RTRADS345 7″ 5050159834570
Thanks to Michael Cleveland: a new rarity!
Interesting cover and the single also contains two new songs: ‘Hands Up’ & ‘The Last Time I Looked’.
A longish article on a swedish website with some quotes of Green and a short history of Scritti Politti: Scritti Politti vÃ¤xlar spÃ¥r pÃ¥ nytt. That sorta translates to: Scritti Politti alternates tracks again. Nice part is there is also a stream of Dr. Abernathy. The article also mentions two reasons for the title White Bread, Black Beer.
– when I played in with black musicians in New york could the sometimes to say about my inpass, â€œ
oneman, thats so white breadâ€. The meant that the lets widely, processed, homogeniserathomogenized. But I like the, Beach Boy’s where my breastmother’s milk. I might also consult that my melodies sometimes lets as child chants. I believe the comes from vacation era coat (soulig reggae). Lov era coat is as child chants for adult.
the title â€œWhite bread, black beerâ€ reflects also my life in Hackney. For first past knows I a home feeling in the blocks where I building. I am depending on a soft,
widewhite breads as the Turkish baker on my street does. Opposite lies a pub where I on the evenings drinks Â Guinness with neighbours and friends.
Our apologies for a clearly awful translation of the swedish test!
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Bibbly recieved this intricate remix of The Word Girl from Free Moral Agent.
An explanation from Free Moral Agent:
I’ll give you some clues on this mix as far as samples. All of the musical elements in this mix is derived from sounds from the song “The Word Girl”, just manipulated in certain ways: The main keyboard sounds are sampled from the end of the song, before the piano ending: I also used the vocoder at the end also for more displacement of format from the original tune: The only instrument not directly from the song is the sub-bass and a patch I created with FabFilter. Guitar is sampled from the song as well.
read more »
A nice White Bread, Black Beer review in Word Magazine issue May 2006. Thanks to Enda P. Guinan for spotting it.
New Album â€œWhite Bread, Black Beerâ€
Scritti Politti aka Green Gartside releases his new album â€œWhite Bread, Black Beerâ€ through Rough Trade Records on 5.6.2006. This is his first album in seven years and sees him returning to Rough Trade after being away since the early 1980â€™s.
â€œIts an album of me playing around with myself in the back roomâ€ says Green â€œI want to convey the idea of just me alone at home. â€œ
Forming in Leeds after seeing the Sex Pistols, Scritti became a Camden squat land collective, devouring Marxist critical theory and applying it to pop so remorselessly that after several landmark singles, they became too self â€“ conscious to make it. Gartside re- emerged from this stasis and his 1980 collapse, as a genuine pop star. His talent was hinted at in the aching beauty of â€œThe Sweetest Girlâ€â€“ and full blown by â€œCupid & Psyche 85â€ a landmark album that inspired black US pop, right up to Timbalands micro â€“ sliced beats today.
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