Publisher: AK Press
Released: January 1, 2006
This new, mainly acoustic Chumbawamba album is, for the first time, a collection of songs, pure and simple. Songs with a radical voice, songs with those same old same old Chumbawamba fourpart harmonies and catchy choruses, but songs nevertheless songs without drumloops or samples, without backwards cymbals or synth sequencers. It won't fit neatly into any categories, since it stands with its eight legs in different camps. Traditional English music, "unplugged" pop, choral secular music, jangly acoustic singalongs... oh! Just sling a few barely-related words together to create categories that sound vaguely familiar.
We rerecorded English Rebel Songs two years ago, wanting to quietly rerelease it along with various other bits of old fluff found in the corners of gold lamé jacket pockets. We enjoyed doing it, and decided to play some small gigs doing acapella songs. Enjoyed that, too, since it was so different from the fullcolour fullsize cabaret show. Eventually, as it became clear that the eightpiece Chumbawamba wanted to take a lengthy sabbatical, the acoustic/acapella section of the band decided to expand into something much deeper and broader than the monotypical English Rebel Songs, started playing more shows, added accordion, wrote new songs and gradually morphed into a Metallicalike machine. Albeit a newfolk agitprop acoustic Metallica, with melodies, harmonies, and a sense of awareness of the world around us. And without an overbearing Scandinavian drummer, a oneriff guitarist and an expensive therapist at all group meetings.