Underworld announce brand new album ‘Barking’ set for release September 13th 2010
Barking is the title of Underworld’s first album in three years, and their first to be constructed with a brilliant cast of co-conspirators. All the tracks were written by the band in their Essex studio before being given to handpicked studio heads from across the whole spectrum of dance music to add some of their style and creativity to the band’s raw material. The result is a pimped-up Underworld record and their finest collection of songs in over a decade.
From the first undulating pulses of submariner bass, the first vocals – soft like a whisper in the ear – and the first fizz of hi-hats that force along the pace, the sound is unmistakably Underworld. Electronics wrapped effortlessly around songs; streams of consciousness lyrics that form indelible images; a perfectly balanced mix of melody and rhythm. Underworld’s sixth studio album is a thundering return to form, although it’s fair to say that the band responsible have never really been below par.
The tracks on Barking are:
Bird 1 (additional production by Dubfire)
Always Loved A Film (a/p Mark Knight & D. Ramirez)
Scribble (a/p High Contrast)
Hamburg Hotel (a/p Appleblim & Al Tourettes)
Grace (a/p Dubfire)
Between Stars (a/p Mark K & D. Ramirez)
Diamond Jigsaw (a/p Paul van Dyk)
Moon In Water (a/p High Contrast)
Underworld are Rick Smith and Karl Hyde. They have been working together in music for thirty years since meeting in Cardiff University in the late ’70s. Following time working in various bands with luminaries like Conny Plank, Iggy Pop and Debbie Harry, Smith and Hyde (with help from DJ Darren Emerson) began experimenting with making club music in the early ’90s, first as Lemon Interupt then reactivating one of their old band names – Underworld – releasing their first single proper, Mmm… Skyscraper, I Love You, in 1993. As well as becoming the first band from the nascent ‘dance’ scene to grace the cover of a weekly music paper, they scored massive critical hits with each of their album releases (Dubnobasswithmyheadman, Second Toughest In The Infants,Beaucoup Fish, One Hundred Days Off and Oblivion With Bells).
In 2005, Underworld released the Riverrun series, a trio of downloadable mixes of new material and works-in-progress, making them one of the first acts of their scale to attempt to directly sell their own records. The band continue to release alternate versions and curios through www.underworldlive.com.
Underworld’s continuing relationship with director Danny Boyle has seen their music used in many of his movies. In 1996 a former B-side track, Born Slippy (Nuxx), soundtracked an entire summer, selling close to a million copies when released as a single. They recently scored Boyle’s sci-fi movie Sunshine.
In the early ’90s Smith and Hyde helped co-found the design company tomato. Karl has recently worked extensively with Brian Eno on the collaborative Pure Scenius project, playing largely improvised gigs at Sydney’s Opera House and at the Brighton Festival.
Underworld remain one of the most innovative and dynamic live bands on the planet – after a series of already announced Australian dates this June, they will be touring the album extensively towards the end of the year.
“Scribble”, the first new material from the new album to see the light of day, is available now from underworldlive.com and will be commercially released on 28th June 2010, including a remix by Hospital recording artist, Netsky. The band will also headline the iTunes Festival at London’s Roundhouse on 17th July.
“Pure sun-streaked glory. “Scribble” is almost unrelentingly joyous, and vocalist Karl Hyde knows it too, singing, “And it’s okay/You give me everything I need.” My thoughts exactly and considering Underworld’s long-running existence, that’s a blessing for sure.” Pitchfork
“The track finds the duo of vocalist Karl Hyde and producer/composer Rick Smith going outside their inner circle and collaborating with Welsh-born drum’n’bass maven High Contrast. The resulting track melds a gorgeous, sunny vocal hook from Hyde.” SPIN
“Built on a light and skittering drum & bass rhythm, breezy synths and multi-layered vocals, this is Underworld poppier than we’ve ever heard them. And it’s a positive rush. If this is going to be the sound of Karl Hyde and Rick Smith after 30 years together, we’re going to pay a lot of attention in 2010.” URB