Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Big Up To (Geoff) Barrow


My last attempt at producing a gig poster that I wasn't actually commissioned to do didn't end too successfully.. The image I knocked up for DOOM's show at The Roundhouse was passed around various people at Lex Records, who all seemed to give it the thumbs up, but I'm not sure if the poster was ever seen by The Super Villain Himself and it didn't end up being used for anything other than decorating a previous post on this Blog, recounting the tale.

Perhaps a similar fate awaits my latest unauthorized offering (above) for the awesome, Barrow/Beak> produced, recent Stones Throw signing, and self-categorized 'Mockwurst' singer, Anika.. but I'll pass around a link to this post on celeb-bothering site Twitter and see what happens. I enjoyed drawing it anyway. The symmetry on the name seems to work well, I gave it a bit of a Bauhaus colour scheme, and the imagery was inspired by Anika's debut video for her Yoko Ono cover, 'Yang Yang'..

I've been inspired by Geoff Barrow's creative output ever since Portishead's 'Dummy'. Just after I picked up the band's debut album, my Dad taped me a mix that Barrow did on Radio 1's 'Breeze Block Session' and the stuff he played and the way he played it influenced my own DJing and record collection from then on. He dropped a Nine acapella over a Portishead beat, and blended stuff like Gangstarr's '? Remains' with the theme from 'The Man With The Golden Arm' and A Tribe Called Quest's 'If The Papes Come' with The Beatles 'Sgt. Pepper Reprise'. I dug out most of the records he played, but I wish I'd never lost that chuffin' tape!

Anyhoo, even though I got to DJ in a few clubs and house parties back int' day, and even worked my way through a heat or two in the '97 DMC Championships, I was never able to blend 'turntablism' with being in a band like Geoff Barrow did so well. As Hip-Hop hit the mainstream more and more, my record buying changed. I was buying old Blues records and weird Rock 'n' Roll albums, but I was doing less DJing and I started playing percussion and writing songs with my mates. I became obsessed with the German band, Can and got to play with their ex-vocalist Damo Suzuki a couple of times. When Portishead's 'Third' came out it seemed as though Barrow was on a similar 'Krautrock' vibe and that album clicked with me straight away. It's no exaggeration that the switch-up in 'The Rip' is one of my all time favorite musical moments.. ever!

I featured the song on the 'Musical Showboat' mixtape that I gave away with some of my comics last year, and sandwiched it between slices of Neu! and Can.. have a listen to that bit from the mix here if you like..

So, in the spirit of Zeppelin's 'Hats Off To (Roy) Harper', may I present this Anika poster template and general arse-kissing Blog post as a 'Big Up To (Geoff) Barrow'.. For further listening check out Anika's self-titled debut, and anything else by Beak>.. Oh, and get yourself down to the Portishead curated 'I'll Be Your Mirror' ATP shindig, which I may have to end up selling my soul to get a ticket for.

No comments:

Post a Comment