Peter Hook is set to sue his former band mates in New Order.
The bass player departed in 2007, with relations long since souring between Hook and his former colleagues.
Peter Hook has taken his case to the High Court, as NME reports, arguing that "former friends" Bernard Sumner and Stephen and Gillian Morris set up a fresh company to handle the band's assets, steering assets away from him and leaving him £2.3 million out of pocket.
Hook's barrister, Mark Wyeth QC, told a High Court Judge: "It was as though George Harrison and Ringo Starr had got together at George’s house one Friday night and had acted together to divest Paul McCartney of his shareholding in the Beatles, and didn’t tell Yoko about it either."
The barrister explained that he believed the case was "not about musical direction or musical differences or personality clashes, but first and foremost about wrongdoers taking control of a company and stripping it of its property. Mr Hook seeks restoration of the company’s misappropriated property, property it has held for more than 20 years."
New Order's lawyer David Casement QC responded by saying that the hand had acted lawfully, and that Peter Hook was using the case as leverage to get back into the band.
Judge Cooke decreed that a full trial should follow, telling both parties: "I strongly urge the parties to seek to resolve the issues between them by entering into some commercial negotiations so that they do not incur the expense of pursuing this matter to trial".
The case is ongoing.
Where once the music industry was a labyrinth of closed doors and shadowy moguls with no time for the little people, it is now, still reeling from the immediacy and omnipresence of the Internet, a more communal beast, open to exploring new possibilities from wherever they may germinate.
Every Tom, Dick and Wagner think they know The Biz now, as The X Factor offers a (completely false) insight into the machinations of label guru, but what they don’t know is what happens in the real world: who are the people that get things done?
And how do you meet them?
Here’s where Clash steps in.
Beginning on December 10th, Clash Social is the first of a new series of events that will invite Clash’s extended network to descend upon one location with the intention of joining up friends through live music, good food, and copious amounts of booze.
The inaugural summit is brought to you in partnership with Horizons/Gorwelion, the stalwarts of new music from BBC Cymru Wales, and on the night we’ll be joined by its flagship duo, Bethan Elfyn and Huw Stephens, and five of their freshest favourite acts.
Performing live and representing the best new Welsh talent will be Dan Bettridge, Aled Rheon, Peasant’s King, Hannah Grace, and Houdini Dax, with DJ sets from Huw Stephens (who promises a special festive set) and the Clash DJs.
Also present at Clash Social will be a host of industry reps that will be on hand to answer your questions, pass on advice, and check out your Facebook page. From agents to A&Rs, and managers to marketeers, we’ll open up our Rolodex for your networking needs.
Clash Social is to be held at the Dead Dolls House in Peckham, London, on Thursday 10th December, from 6pm. You can find all the info on the event’s Facebook page, while tickets (£5 each) can be bought over at Billetto.
Stay tuned to ClashMusic.com for further details and news on future Clash Social announcements.
Kyle Lettman takes from R&B past to forge something for the future.
The London artist's new EP 'Under Construction' is out now (purchase LINK), matching some sprung UK garage rhythm to that velvet voice.
Coco Dupree shoots past on 'Matter Of Time' and the results are pretty magical. Dripping with soul, the partnership seems to push both artists to the limit.
Kyle Lettman: “We really tried to capture the true essence of an old school slow jam, but served on a modern platter."
Clash is able to premiere the video now – check it out below.
Interviewing a musician can often be a strange business. A voice so carefully hewn on record can seem remarkably different on the telephone – the curves and bumps of the spoken word so different from the eloquent yelps of the studio.
Calvin Johnson, though, remains – refreshingly, absolutely – Calvin Johnson. Ploughing deep into the baritone, his polite, respectful manner recalls the innocence of his songwriting, the careful persistence of each answer echoing the artistic persistence that has under-pinned his own lengthy career.
Helping to form Beat Happening – alongside Heather Lewis and Bret Lunsford – the singer added a new, rather more humane, rather more emotive, string to the American underground's bow. Sifting through this era, the trio have pieced together new 2-LP retrospective 'Look Around' – an appropriate introduction for newcomers, and a wonderful summation for those already enamoured by their charms.
Approached by Domino, the project fell into place with remarkable ease. “It just seemed like it was time to get this Beat Happening stuff out into the world,” he says. “And it just seemed like the album was a good place for it to be.”
With a new generation of groups finding inspiration in DIY ideals, Beat Happening's stock has rarely been higher. “It seems as though the general population has a more accepting view towards new music, in my opinion. But, maybe, who knows? It seems like what we're doing doesn't seem so strange, for better or worse. That could be a good or bad thing.”
“I always felt that the music we made was timeless, it could come from any time and it could be accepted in any time. So the fact that it was made 25 years ago I don't think is relevant to… people can perceive it on its own merits.”
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It's certainly a long way from the band's roots. Emerging from Olympia, Washington, Beat Happening's minimalist pop drew from garage rock, from The Cramps and from the more experimental end of punk rock. “When I started getting into punk, nobody even knew what punk was,” he recalls. “The average person had no idea what punk was, they didn't know anything about it, and they certainly had no way of hearing it. It wasn't on the radio, so there was no way to hear it. So when we were starting out punk was completely underground. We were playing to people who didn't know about punk, didn't know what it was and had never heard of it. That was the problem.”
Pushing hard against this indifference and often outright hostility, Beat Happening created some of the most timeless music of the entire 80s underground movement. Listening to 'Look Around' is absolutely fascinating, with each track seeming contain within it a myriad, a vast mosaic of secrets. “Our records were very well produced by Steve Hisk. He's a professional engineer, and he did a good job. And I think that he captured the songs which I think are worth documenting,” the singer explains. “It's just good songwriting. I think that's it. We just happened to write songs that speak for themselves.”
The process of putting the compilation together allowed the three band members the chance to rake back over the past. “It was exciting. It was exciting to re-imagine the songs and put them together in an order that would make sense in a contemporary setting. Bret came up with the initial list and Heather and I made some suggestions. It was fun.”
Not that the members of Beat Happening are estranged. Still rooted in the Pacific North West, the trio see each other on a regular basis. “Bret lives in Anacortes, Washington, which is about 100 miles north of me. He lives on this island called Fidalgo Island. He has been very instrumental in keeping the music scene there going. He's one of the people who started a festival that happens every summer, and he started this label up there called Know Your Own.”
“So he's been very instrumental in keeping the music scene vital in Anacortes and he's always been conscious to keep the connection between Olympia and Anacortes so I've played in Anacortes many times, and I always go for the festival every summer. Just this August his older daughter got married, and Heather and I were there for that. It was a lot of fun.”
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I always felt that the music we made was timeless…
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A twin LP set, 'Look Around' is built work as a continuous document. “It's a double album but I just think of it as an album. It's on two records but we didn't envision it as one record being this and one record being that. It's just an album that's on two records, a collection of the songs we felt were in the order that made sense to us.”
Calvin of course founded K Records, the label that would become connected to much larger names – Kurt Cobain, Beck, Modest Mouse – while retaining its status as a (relatively speaking) minute independent. Famed for its dedication to the physical artifact – K refused to discontinue its cassette runs long before the current revival took hold – the songwriter admits that he simply wants his music to be heard.
“Whatever works for people to hear the music. I think that it's great that music is so accessible now. When K started, actually hearing the music… that was the challenge. And in the modern world, hearing music is not a challenge. It's extremely accessible. And that's exciting, that people can hear music whenever they want to and hear it from all different corners of the world. So the idea was that we start a label because we want to share music with people and now that has become much more of a reality than ever before.”
“It's just a different world,” he adds. “That worked, and I still like cassettes and records. Those are formats that I prefer, but I understand that the majority of people in the world listen to music in a different way than I do. And that's fine with me. I'm not trying to make them change the way… people listen to music the way they do because that's what they do. It's not my place to try to make people listen to records if they don't want to. But I like records, so I want to make records available for people who want to hear 'em.”
Forever associated with the Pacific North West, Calvin Johnson believes that the internet has not succeeded in flattening out these localised sounds and scenes. “People like to play music with each other, they like to go out, they like to see live music and that's always going to be true, I think. And that's always going to be the basis of any regional identity. So that will always exist. The internet is a tool, it can be used as a tool for establishing local identity as well as erasing it.”
Currently putting the finishing touches to a new album from the Selector Dub Narcotic project, Calvin Johnson is continually looking forwards. On his latest UK tour the singer drew from a 70-strong set list, tailing each show to the mood of the night. But 'Look Around' ends with a curiosity – the 2000 recording of 'Angel Gone'. Could more Beat Happening work take place in the future?
“I'm not opposed. I've always felt like… people say, are you going to play again? I'm like, I'm not opposed. But I feel like I only want to do it if we're going to do new songs. I don't want to spend time re-learning old songs. It takes just as much time to make new songs, so we might as well make new songs. So, under those conditions I'm not opposed.”
Retaining his passion for music of all shades, sounds and hues, Calvin Johnson remains justifiably proud of the work he completed with Beat Happening. From 1985's seminal debut to the dreamy finale 'You Turn Me On' the band's output retained a remarkable creative intensity, one that cuts through clearly on the new compilation. Asked for the Beat Happening achievement he is most proud of, the singer is unequivocal.
“Well, the fact that we ended up making six albums. I'm a bit taken aback by it, because I feel the quality was maintained throughout all six records. So I feel like we did a pretty good job with that. Of just accomplishing such a body of work. The quality was consistent throughout.”
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'Look Around' is out now on Domino.
Animal Collective are set to release new album 'Painting With' on February 19th.
The band's first album since 'Centipede Hz' in 2012, it's the Baltimore outfit's eleventh studio album to date.
Portner (Avey Tare), Lennox (Panda Bear) and Brian Weitz (Geologist) worked on the material, which Portner describes as "really short songs: no B.S, get in, get out material…"
The album was recorded at EastWest Studios in Hollywood, and features contributions from John Cale and Colin Stetson. New cut 'Floridada' is online now – check it out below.
'Painting With' will be released on February 19th. Tracklisting:
2. Hocus Pocus
4. Lying In The Grass
5. The Burglars
6. Natural Selection
7. Bagels In Kiev
8. On Delay
9. Spilling Guts
10. Summing The Wretch
11. Golden Gal
Fatima Yamaha has always had this album in his locker. From a pretty dormant back catalogue reawakened by 'What's a Girl to Do' catching a second wind this year, the Dutchman's lot is quite the synth mixture of aggressive and regressive New Romanticism, Chromeo's knowledge of tongue in cheek funk that's shamelessly good for a groove, a modern bright young thing with a conversely pasty outlook, and fixing Rockwell's surveillance camera to his synth bank.
Without over complication or spreading himself too thinly, Yamaha mix-and-matches the brightly tipped with the need to reach for the light switch/blacklight. 'Love Invaders', canny enough to edge into pastiche status through its accompanying, made-for-Halloween-shower scene falsetto, and the excellently ambiguous stalking of 'Citizens' featuring Sofie Winterson, are the stand out electro-R&B returns for all seasons. Where 'Only of the Universe' is understated enough to reach out to the charts, all Sunday morning easiness and polygon butterflies, 'Night Crossing' finds itself in an industrial No Man's Land, showing that the synth work is not all shtick.
Sometimes Yamaha is just satisfied with weaving, layered dancefloor tenancy, and there's the feeling that despite the constant changes in outlook, he makes a point of getting the most from a small pool of presets and plug-ins, rather than trapping himself in a crucible of keyboards. 'Migratory Floozy' and the title track are big haired 80s clinches where the figure in your nightmares becomes real: go-slows allowing emotional seepage – pretty much genuine, despite the synthetic front – that keep up with upfront maximalism.
The album's cohesion is just about there for something that's only ten tracks and 45 minutes long, and you'll walk away sold on the idea of Yamaha's mystery – i.e. – yes, it could all just be a dream.
Words: Matt Oliver
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Florence + The Machine and Kendrick Lamar are set to play a British Summertime show at Hyde Park next year.
The pair will play an all-day show on July 2nd, with Florence + The Machine set to headline following a Kendrick Lamar support slot.
Blood Orange is also due to play, while fans can also expect a set from Mercury nominee Jamie xx.
Tickets go on general sale this Friday (December 4th) at 9am.
Previously announced British Summertime 2016 headline acts include Mumford & Sons and Take That.
The Dirty Blonde all grew up within a few streets of one another.
Born and brought up in Glasgow, the band have a taste for melody allied to some fuzz pedal crunch.
New song 'Either Way' is online now, and its reminiscent of later Husker Du or even fellow Glaswegian types Teenage Fanclub.
Clash is able to premiere the visuals and they come with more than just a dash of colour.
Check it out now.
“I’d never really given it much attention to be honest,” Toby Leigh recalls of the faux Burberry check, the subject of his latest project: a photo book titled ‘Berberry’.
“Around 2006 I suddenly started seeing the pattern everywhere. This coincided with right wing tabloid media coining the offensive term ‘Chav’. Their subsequent obsession with the culture surrounding the ‘phenomenon’ meant that ‘Berberry’ check was suddenly in the public domain and seen as more than just the preserve of the rich.”
Images like that of Eastenders actress Danniella Westbrook (and daughter) doused in the Haymarket check, and a pre-Instagram Jenner family (also in matching prints) summed up the mood, a result of the early noughties aesthetic from the British fashion house thought up by then new Design Director, Christopher Bailey; the fad trickled into the mainstream and cheap fakes maintained demand.
“It was really funny watching the luxury brand squirm as the pattern gained in popularity and was used in more and more ludicrous ways,” Leigh continues. “I began to realise – as I collected more and more images – that the pattern had become the ubiquitous symbol for anyone wanting to give something a luxury feel. I think it also taps into a sort of global obsession with British heritage on some level.”
Burberry’s ad campaigns of the era, shot by Mario Testino, both glamouised the print and made it cool: oh there’s Kate Moss in Burberry underwear, Liberty Ross in a check mini dress, Naomi Campbell in a tartan bucket hat. Subsequent campaigns have refrained from using the check in such a pronounced way.
Shot first exclusively on a digital point and shoot, later on an iPhone, Leigh’s images span a decade of the blackmarket’s best wannabes, DIY efforts and OTT knockoffs. Less Dapper Dan reappropriates Gucci for Harlem, more ‘exactly how far can we take this’, the project’s transition from accidental hobby to book came about after Toby showed his collection to his brother Leo: “he just said ‘you should make these into a book’, simple.”
Newly released – the launch party takes place on Thursday – the book has been produced in collaboration with independent publishers Ditto Press, and response so far has been positive. “People seem to really respond to it,” the artist asserts, “I think the sheer volume of images makes people laugh and there’s a disbelief about how out of control the phenomenon has become.”
Quite. One of Toby’s personal favourites is a picture from Serbia where a whole building has been covered in the infamous check. “I actually didn’t take that photo,” he admits. “I’d heard about this building in this tiny town called Vranie. I spent two weeks on the phone trying to find someone who could speak English in the tourist information office in the town. Eventually a very nice guy called Nebojsa agreed to go and take a picture for me; it’s a great shot.”
“The most furtive ground for pics was the Souk in Marrakech,” he later divulges. “That’s where I found two of the best shots: the Calvin Klein pants with the ‘Berberry’ check and also the shot of a guy selling knock off watches out of a ‘Berberry’ clad briefcase. Gold!”
An illustrator by trade (It’s Nice That has described him as “the wittiest retro janus-faced illustrator around”), his interest in subverting convention is nothing new; for the 2012 Olympics he produced a series of canvas bags, in official games colours, with phrases like ‘I’m renting my flat to a fat American family’, ‘they’re all on steroids’ and ‘it only took me 3 hours to get to work this morning’.
“I like things that make me laugh and I like making other people laugh. I grew up reading things like Viz and Robert Crumb and they had a massive impact on my work,” he observes. “Most of the time, subversive stuff chimes more with what people actually think. Maybe not in the sanitised world of media and advertising, but people in real life like weird shit. Just look at your Facebook feed! The slogans on the ‘Olympic’ bags were just things I heard real people in London actually saying in the build up to London 2012.”
Unlike Margaret Thatcher’s wardrobe, which the V&A politely declined to showcase at the beginning of the month, his bags are now part of the museum’s collection. How does something like that happen?
Explains Toby: “The bags gained a lot of publicity during the games as we were virtually the only people who dared to design anything related to the event. You might remember that LOCOG, who ran the games, took an extremely draconian approach to anyone they considered to be profiting from the Olympic brand: one guy who owned a bagel shop was told to remove his window display of five bagels arranged in the shape of the Olympic rings FFS!”
“After it was all over, the V&A were collecting as many objects as they could related to London 2012 for their permanent collection. These objects are kept in storage in the museum, but at some point in the future they will choose to look back at London 2012 in some capacity and I’ve very proud to have been a part of the story. Especially as I was basically taking the piss out of the whole thing,” he finishes, with a smile.
Inside ‘Berberry’ you’ll find all sorts of objects decked out in the check, first used to line trench coats in the 1920’s: mass produced clothing, birthday cakes, cars, tattoos, wheelchairs, iPhone covers and toilet seats are all in there. But has the curator ever adopted the print himself? “Can’t say I have.”
Words: Zoe Whitfield
The Fat White Family have announced plans for a full British tour.
The London-based outfit will release new album 'Songs For Our Mothers' on January 22nd, with the band set to take their debauched garage-punk wares out on the road.
The tour opens in Birmingham on February 22nd, before hitting Nottingham, Sheffield, Dublin, Belfast and more. The Fat White Family will play Manchester on February 27th, before hitting Oxford and Bristol.
Ending in London on March 9th, UK tickets are available on pre-sale via DICE at 9am this Wednesday (December 2nd) and on general sale at 9am on Friday (December 4th) via this link.
Catch The Fat White Family live:
20 Birmingham Institute 2
21 Nottingham Rescue Rooms
22 Sheffield Plug
23 Dublin Whelans
25 Belfast Limelight
26 Glasgow Garage
27 Manchester Academy 2
28 Oxford Academy 2
29 Bristol Bierkeller
5 Zeewolde Where The Wild Things Are
8 Portsmouth Wedgewood Rooms
9 London Coronet