OTW #511: Bipolar Sunshine

Soul-barer looks to go second time lucky...
Bipolar Sunshine by Neil Bedford

As Clash arrives at a café diner in Manchester, we find ex-Kid British frontman Adio Marchant with a rather tasty looking bacon sandwich in front of him.

But such is his hunger to talk about new solo project Bipolar Sunshine that after 10 minutes we have to remind him it’s going cold. “

This is what I’ve wanted to do for a long time. No one questions me now. I don’t have to answer to anyone,” he explains between bites.

Multicultural Mancunian ska-band Kid British had huge potential but didn’t quite take off. They signed to Mercury in 2008, picked up plenty of fans including Coventry’s legendary 2 Tone act The Specials, and even supported The Stone Roses at Heaton Park in June last year. But things weren’t right: “We were very naïve. It was a massive learning curve but now it’s time to do something else.”

He’s doing pretty well on his own, too. ‘Fire’ was the first track to go online in December last year. It’s a beautiful juxtaposition of golden, heat-shimmering reverb that could soundtrack a Saharan sunrise, and lyrical gloom more in common with this city’s overcast skies.

“There’s a mixture of so many emotions from relationships in it, and my granddad passing away,” he remembers. “Stuff like that was boiling and I let it out, therapeutically.”

Adio has swallowed some of Ghospoet’s melancholic jam. His EP, ‘Aesthetics’, blends a similar amount of despair, apathy and hope as the Mercury Prize nominee.

“I’m baring my soul and saying things about myself on record that I wouldn’t just say to the average person in the street,” he says earnestly. Also on the release is ‘Rivers’, a chorus-driven slice of pop to “keep people guessing” about what to expect. “That’s the bipolar thing. I’m not limited musically in any way.”

With 25 songs in the bag it’s worth keeping an eye on where he goes next.

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Where: Manchester

What: Afrobeat electro  

Get 3 Songs: ‘Fire’, ‘Rivers’, ‘Blossom’

Unique Fact: Adio is a fan of chick flick The Notebook, a sample of which makes it into ‘Fire’.

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Bipolar Sunshine play Clash's next East Not East party at London's Birthdays on August 8th - head here for details.

Words: Simon Butcher

Photo: Neil Bedford

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