31st December 2008
This was in the December 2008 edition of Q magazine.
28th December 2008
Bristol City entertained Crystal Palace at Ashton Gate today and Massive Attack sponsored the match programme. City where victorious, thanks to Nicky Maynard, who grabbed his fourth goal in three games. With only two minutes played, Stern John's corner found Maynard on the edge of the box and he curled home superbly. City should have gone further ahead but Louis Carey headed wide, and Ivan Sproule hit the post in the first half. The closest the visitors came to a goal was just before half-time when Lee Hills' shot from the edge of the box crashed against the crossbar.
16th December 2008
100 Suns are working on the score for 44 Inch Chest. The film stars Ray Winstone, Ian Macshane and John Hurt and is directed by Malcolm Venville.
4th December 2008
3rd December 2008
100th Window by Jeffrey Theissen
“When did banality and mediocrity become a good image for our children?” -Bill Hicks
I think about this quote a lot when I consider the lukewarm reaction towards Massive Attack’s 100th Window, compared to a band like AC/DC making a career out of being the musical equivalent of Mack Bolan. It seems like innovation and genre-bending are being punished, while reverberation in the musical form of a sledgehammer to the face has been rewarded for about three decades now.
With 100th Window, we are faced with a musical surrender that blurs the line between paranoia and rapture. This truly is the quintessential post-9/11 album, capturing all the uneasiness and apprehension most of us are now perpetually riddled with on some level.
In the wake of every other band that was implementing 9/11 at the time either as a vehicle for strength-through-numbers solidarity and flag-in-the-front-lawn patriotism (read: Springsteen) or as a convenient way to launch into their hair-brained soapbox concept albums (read: Green Day), Massive Attack had their finger on the collective pulse of the world following the ruin, encompassing all the good that emerged out of it with a sizeable sense of dread that will forever continue to guide the landscape of the land.
Yes, 100th Window is far more consistent and one-dimensional then any of its predecessors, but that’s precisely its strength. This is a brooding, darkened effort from a group that never seems to have anything less than laser-like precision, an execution rarely straying from the blueprints. Every experiment they’ve thrown our way as progenitors of trip-hop has been met with much success, which is why it’s fairly sobering to see a methodical, streamlined Massive Attack album, one that is just as powerful and engaging as any of their best work.
Sure, 100th Window plunges the listener into the heart of the unknown, into a void of minimal, extended loops and control room computer noise, but that doesn’t mean the journey to nowhere doesn’t have its moments of overwhelming beauty. Witness any of the tracks featuring Sinéad O’Connor as indisputable examples of this (particularly mesmerizing is “A Prayer for England” and “Special Cases”), but the unmistakable highlights of the album are both tracks featuring the immortal Horace Andy. “Everywhen” stands alone as the most cinematic, magnetic track they have ever released, a song that transcends everyday description, probably because it carries with it a sound akin to something created outside the realm of time. By the time “Name Taken” rolls around, it’s safe to say Massive Attack have officially settled in to live the album out like some form of claustrophobic survival and ominous meditation in this oftentimes bleak existence.
The “100 Window” theory states that, in this day and age, where everything is compromised and nothing is truly private in the purest sense of the word, the only way to maintain an unpolluted aura of confidentiality is to lock all 100 proverbial windows. If 99 out of 100 are locked, the thief will find that 100th window. Of course, a total self-barricade can leave the person fettering their life away with their back to the barred windows, so this is a concept that is rarely practiced.
It is not the intention of Massive Attack to leave the listener toiling away in misery and despair, at least not entirely. They implore all to gaze out that final remaining window left that lends us the only untainted glimpse into the core of human existence. Without a doubt, we will see parts of the world that are horrifying, beautiful, chaotic, and righteous. Most likely, we will see all these things at the same time, and this will undoubtedly trouble us. But at least we will see, pure and simple. And it’s this that makes 100th Window such a crowning achievement: The reassurance that, now more than ever, it is okay, even necessary, to feel like all is not right with the world.
21st November 2008
Bristol Black and White is a new book of Photographs by Mark Simmons which is released today. Mark Simmons has been capturing images of Bristol since the early 1980s. His early work featured street scenes and characters from the St Paul's and St Werburgh's areas where he then lived. As Mark developed his hobby into a career, his passion for creating powerful images of ordinary people has been and inspirational theme in his work.
"There's nothing very complicated to my photography. I just generally like people," says Mark. "That's not to say it's easy getting a good picture of someone - it's very difficult - but it's about finding a way to connect with people; being sensitive to their particular character and story."
Coming from the social documentary tradition of photography, Mark has been capturing the people of Bristol over the past 25 years. This book accompanies an exhibition held at The Grant Bradley Gallery in Bedminster of his personal favourite images taken over the years.
The work covers community events, political demonstrations, nightlife & festivals, commissioned portraits, urban culture and street life. Expect to see a powerful set of images with the added interest of a few local celebs.
The Grant Bradley Gallery will be hosting a preview tonight between 6-9pm. The Exhibition runs until Friday 9th Jan 2009 (Opening times: 10am-4pm Monday to Saturday). Copies of the book are for sale at the Gallery but you can also purchase it directly from Tangent Books or on Amazon.co.uk using this link, which will support redlines. Read more regarding his iconic pictures of Bristol in this interview.
15th November 2008
13th November 2008
4th November 2008
Banksy's manager, Steve Lazarides is known for his eye for subversive, intelligent, attention grabbing artists. He has now gathered together the best of them to create a collection of Outsider art. From "Tank Girl and Gorrilaz" creator, Jamie Hewlett to international artist collective Faile and Conor Harrington, the new generation of boundary-pushing artists will feature. 3Ds work is featured in the new book also:
Buy the book on Amazon.co.uk using this link and help redlines pay for itself. You can purchase original pieces by 3D at www.lazinc.com.
12th October 2008
6th October 2008
Massive Attack are 'innovators'
Trip hop pioneers Massive Attack were today honoured with the Q Innovation In Sound title at the 2008 Q Awards with Russian Standard Vodka.
The duo - Robert Del Naja (3D) and Grant Marshall (Daddy G) – were rewarded for their groundbreaking approach to music-making by Q magazine.
Founded in the late 1980s, Massive Attack released their first album Blue Lines – an acknowledged classic in 1991 and have constantly reinvented their sound and approach, working with collaborators such as Shara Nelson, Tricky, Sinead O’Connor and even Madonna along the way.
Collecting the award, Del Naja said: "For a couple of guys that can’t play any instruments and can’t make music, we’ve been innovating for fucking years and getting away with it. Thanks very much.”
1st October 2008
Well the festival season has drawn to a close and by far the best experience for me, was that incredible weekend back in June. Yes, there has been a slight delay in delivering this report to you all and I must confess it's not because it's a masterpiece, as you will discover....
After a relatively short train journey from
Only a few days earlier I was definitely not, as far as I was concerned, going to the
So fast forward to Friday afternoon and we start rediscovering the site, which always changes a little every time I go back. We stumble upon Vampire Weekend, who are playing on the Other Stage and I remembered that I wanted to check them out. On paper they sound great - the band is influenced by both African popular music and Western classical music, describing their genre of music as "Upper West Side Soweto". But we weren't impressed, so we moved on quickly up to the green fields for some eco-fuelled interaction to get ourselves in festival mode. Walking through the circus field we see some bloke climbing into a large condom and some other people on a trapeze - all fairly impressive but it made me feel a little dizzy, so we had a sit down and a cup of hippy tea.
Exploring the green fields was fun and my favourite place was the wooded area which was all about permaculture, with an oven that looked like a bumble bee in the middle of it.
Later on we caught the annoying staccato pop screaming, of The Ting Tings by accident and I couldn't really see what all the fuss about. We then made our first exploration of the Dance Village as my festival companion wanted to see the Freestylers, who I did warn where going to be shite and he soon agreed that they where a bit past it. I did want to catch Hercules and Love Affair, a disco collective from New York City, who I've been reading great things about but things didn't work out and so I must warn that was the first indication that it's all going to get a bit hazy from here - always going to be a problem with attempting to report my experiences - I had a really good time, but it really not sure if it looks that good on paper. Especially if I then say, that at some point in the early evening we took in the wonderful delights of Steve Hillage's Mirror System - together with his wife, Miquette Giraudy, they make ambient trance. I know what you're thinking but it was
I'm personally a massive fan of System 7, their day (or rather night) job and found this psybient version very nice indeed thank you very much. The sun started to set and the warm hazy light caught the blissed audience, as it shone through the trees of the glade. We where later to see them in full flight on Sunday night - unusually for an proper dance act, System 7 make extensive use of Hillage's guitars and how gorgeous they are - it's a guilty pleasure worth indulging in at every opportunity. Apparently The Igloo is a 360 degrees digital projection environment and it's a state of the art visual dance floor with an enormous sounding quadraphonic sound system. We saw that the bill on Friday was full of Bristolian DJ's and so it would have been rude not to give the place a visit, especially as Daddy G had a slot presenting Bristol Hifi along with Queen Bee and Mr Benn. First up was Dubstep master spinner Appleblim and so we started drowning in Bass, whilst watching Cows in wellies bouncing around the walls. The set was suburb and was followed by Don Letts who was Ok, although I enjoyed him better on Sunday morning. At some point I did try to check out Roisin Murphy but it seemed everyone else had the same idea I couldn't even get anywhere near to hear her, let alone see her, which is shame as I have a bit of a thing for her dazzling electro and larger than life, outrageous stage costumes. Much later back in the Igloo the time came for Daddy G to came on and he really delivered - the bass levels where fucking awesome and he played a blinder.
Saturday morning saw us trekking up this hill to see Bass Clef in the the Stonebridge, a makeshift pub near the new Park stage. My mate wasn't too impressed because I basically tricked him - he was expecting some sort of reggae - what we got was some broken, almost random harsh beats with some bloke playing a trombone over it. Things got better for him back in the Dance village as we took in the live Bristolian roots sound of Dub From Atlantis and normal service was resumed. Scroll forward a few hours and we stumble on DJ Donna Summer by mistake over at the Glade. He is some mentalist middle aged bloke, who plays happy hardcore and I think the only place where he could ever be acceptable was
From here on in trying to piece together what happened is a bit hard, but activities included talking mate down, eating Mexican food and managing to meet Horace Andy a little while before Massive Attack's performance that night. Can't really say much about that as there isn't much to say - I was having a wonder whilst waiting for my mate to get his act together and found myself in some sort of room with sofas and potted plants and the such like and there he was, the legend himself, sat there listening to something on his iPod. I introduced myself, shook his hand he asked me how I was a- I didn't but didn't really go into any great depth about much and it wasn't a particular long encounter, which was probably for the best given my current state of mind, but needless to say I wondered off with a smile on my face - I'd met one of my heroes by accident - wish I'd thought to ask him what was on his iPod mind.
How does Mark Ronson keep those threads so white? I think that all those women following him round wanted to know also.
The fabric of time and space was beginning to warp from here on in and somehow we missed Roni Size's latest incarnation of Reprazent and ended up listening to some wack house DJ called Nicky Holloway and Trevor Fung by accident whilst we waited for some Techno - right time/wrong stage syndrome.....as I said before, time was starting to ignore the normal laws around about now so the rest of and I realised that I had to make a serious choice between The Black Dog, Jay-Z and Massive Attack. This would really dictate how the rest of the evening would unravel so I had to choose carefully.
Who was I trying to fool? We all know who it was going to be. It would have been simply outrageous not to show my face and needless to say the show was fucking fantastic and they set me up nicely for the evening.
So we wonder into the other stage field where the Massive where going to be at, locate a suitable vantage pint and sit down as the gorgeous sounds of Alpha's "Come from Heaven" fill my ears. I really do love this album and it was totally unexpected - I didn't even notice what it was at first - it wasn't on particularly loud but it seemed to take me down a level and I felt like I was ready for what was to come. I've never approached a Massive performance in this state of mind before so was apprehensive that I may get bored or frustrated with the slightly different pace of action. I must warn you all now - I won't apologise for the gushing praise that's about to be relayed - some may merely expect it from a certified Massive Attack disciple but I'm merely reporting what happened. They have let me down before and I've never been one to deny this....
As opener "ALL I WANT" pans out a wash of brilliance comes over me and I remember how amazing this band can be. It feels like a real event and sets the tone well, with both 3D and Daddy G involved - their voices sounding a little different and maybe a little shaky. The strongest element is that of new vocalist Yolanda, who is a vocalist I already know from Pinch's productions and has also featured on what is easily Drum & Bass tune of the year – TAKE ME AWAY by Chase & Status.
Before singing MAROONED, 3D questions "if there are any simple country folk in the house tonight", to loud cheers and then answers back with "It'll be fucking quite in
There was a lot of excitement on site about Jay Z and he apparently tore it up, althogh initial reports onstage from 3D suggest that there has been some sort of racist incident involving bananas when he took the stage. I never heard or read anything more about this however so I'm not sure if it was rumour or not. Needless to say I think he pissed all over whatever else was on offer from the Pyramid. An angry KARMACOMA follows and then we get a very nice turn from Stepahnie Dosen who graces Teardrop with her gorgeous vocals.
It seems like there is new tune after new tune being road tested tonight and it really is a treat. What I like about this new music, is that although it definitely sounds like Massive Attack it's still very fresh.
I'm not sure if I've overdosed on Dubstep lately but 16 Seeter has that flavour and I'll certainly look forward to a couple of heavy weight 12"s of this with some remixes from Pinch and Rob Smith maybe - the soundsystem got it's first test of the evening bass wise and passed with flying colours - that always has to be concern outside in a large field.
A ferocious Risingson follows on with voices returned to standard operating levels and it's a nice touch when they let the sample play out at the death. KINGPIN was another dub vibbed stepper and then we have a mighty MEZZANINE and some more new ones, HARPISCHORD and RED LIGHT (It think they have that title wrong – it should be RED LINES ;o)
The inevitable INERTIA CREEPS sounds solid before a pleasantly predictable SAFE FROM HARM, which was dedicated to Nelson Mandela – today was his birthday.
Angel is what it's always all about for me and it proved to be the real highlight of the evening. I got lost in the supernova and the BASS did the rest - they should just play it for an hour really to do it proper justice.
Not sure what really happened after that but it involved lasers and UNFINISHED SYMPATHY. From then we possibly found ourselves at
Next day I was knackered so it was to be a Sunday spent worshiping to the god of Dub, with an excellent bass marathon spent in the sunshine of the G-stage starting with Don Letts and continuing with Dr Alex Paterson, The Channel One Sound System and The Moody Boyz. I would like to have seen Leonard Cohen on Sunday, but my mate was still bitter after the Bass Clef incident, so I couldn't convince him that this bloke he had never heard of was a Jamaican reggae Legend. Even when Bass Clef appeared again on the stage in front of us he was reluctant to move so I left him to it and wondered off with the express intent of making it down tot he Pyramid for the first time that weekend but I obviously I had lost interest as I came back soon with some Mexican food .
Silent Disco - I've always been intrigued but it was rubbish - I need bass when I'm raving.
Another hour was spent with Appleblim and he was followed swiftly by an entertaining Caspa & Rusko - as I had predicted - Dubstep ran things this weekend but the god of techno was going be the to shine even brighter. We moved into the West Coast Dance tent where System 7 where already in full flight, warming things up nicely. Their new album
I had waited all weekend for this and it was a fine finale - the innovator, Detroit Techno Legend Derrick May transcended my expectations – he was truly sublime.
After that we probably encountered DJ Shot'Nes of the Balkan Beat Box in the Pussy Parlure and then indulged in a set from one of the blokes out of Orbital before stumbling along the Railway Line to the new Lost Vagueness which is called Shangri. There we found dancing girls and bounced around to hardcore jungle in the Bassline Circus. There was a stumble around the
Many thanks must go to Marc who made the dream a reality and my Wife, who had to stay home, as she's expecting our first baby :o)
You can apparently download mp3's of Massive Attack's performance here.
5th September 2008
22nd August 2008
25th July 2008
Amphithéâtre Gallo-Romain, Nuits de Fourvière
Lyon, France (20h)
Checkpoint 303 has been invited by Massive Attack this week to perform an electronic set opening up for the band's show in Lyon on July 24th, 2008.
This concert will take place at the gallo-roman amphitheater in Lyon and is part of the Nuits de Fourvière event.
Doors @ 8 pm, Checkpoint 303 will be on @ 9 pm. Nevermind the short notice, the show sold out weeks ago.
Some of the major artists performing at this event this year include: R.E.M., Leonard Cohen, Cat Power, Camille, Youssou N'Dour, Orchestra Baobab, Goran Bregovic, Pink Martini, CocoRosie, Yael Naïm, Pauline Croze, Angélique Kidjo, Rokia Traoré, Asa, Manu Katché, Keith Jarett, Thomas Dutronc, etc...
The full program of this summer festival is available @ Nuits de Fourviere Website: http://www.nuits-de-fourviere.org/
More about Massive Attack @ http://www.massiveattack.com
The first encounter between Massive Attack and Checkpoint 303 took place back in February 2007 when Massive Attack invited Checkpoint 303 to be part of their UK gigs in Birmingham and London's Brixton academy benefit shows organized back in February 2007 by the Hoping Foundation in order to raise funds to help improve the living conditions of Palestinian children in refugee camps in the West Bank , Gaza, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon. After over a year and after numerous checkpoint 303 gigs in Europe, North America and Australia, CP-303 hooks up again with Massive Attack on the road...a road to freedom, justice and peace...
The Checkpoint 303 video of the track "Streets Ô Ramallah" (by Leaphar) is now available on youtube:
(comments are diabled but you can tell us whether you like by rating it.)
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere"
(Martin Luther King, April 16th, 1963)
1st July 2008
Watch part of Massive Attack's incredible performance at Glastonbury on Saturday night: http://www.bbc.co.uk/glastonbury/2008/artists/massiveattack/
24th June 2008
They just graced audiences as headliners of Meltdown Festival on London’s Southbank and whilst there, the trip-hop collective Massive Attack told BBC6 Music that they have nearly completed their new record.
It has been five years since their last studio album 100th Window, but 3D - real name Robert Del Naja, explained that they are in no hurry.
"We’ve done that all the time," he explained, "three years, four years, five years. We’ve never been in a hurry, that's the way we do it and I think that may have something to do with the fact that we’re still around - because obviously we were never meant to hit the star and burn out quickly, it was always meant to be a slow sort of process."
"I like it like that. Why be in a hurry man? You develop as you get older and more mature, and as you change and move through life and experience stuff.
"Hopefully we’d like to think that that comes out in the music - so do it in your own time is my motto."
The album may well be recorded but the Massive attack mastermind can give no clues as to how the record sounds.
"To be honest, until its mixed I can’t even tell you that,” he continued: "And the mix will probably be one of those long, drawn out processes which will probably see us scrap at least half our recording budget in two weeks as we do it all over again!"
3D has also been busy, appearing alongside Damon Albarn as part of political campaigns and demonstrations.
He told 6 Music that his aim is not to overload his music with his political beliefs, but it is in there somewhere.
He explains: "We bury it a little because I think we’ve always been a band about abstractions in the way we compose and the way we collaborate with people.
"You’re getting a lot of different opinions appearing everywhere on the record - different views and different personalities.
"It’s not like one bunch of people who all stand there shaking their fists, you know. Everybody’s got a different angle and different feeling about a situation."
3D went on to say that it is all of his collaborators’ opinions which contribute: "We’re very aware that the whole thing is a collage of people and not one person’s complete vision of it, but we will always try and use our situations to bring political strength to what we do."
For 3D, he believes getting a message across is a fundamental part of his role as a musician: "It’s just a natural condition of it all really. I think that’s part of the deal I signed, if you’re gonna go out and there and be able to get on stage, do all this and play music, then that’s one of the things you’re meant to do."
Hear the Music Week's full interview with Massive Attack by downloading the show's weekly podcast.
13th June 2008
Meltdown starts today. Many events have sold out but there are a few tickets left for some great events including Yellow Magic Orchestra, Stiff Little Fingers and Mark Stewart & the Maffia, Gang of Four & Tom Tom Club, George Clinton, and Primal Scream's historic collaboration with MC5.
If you haven't got tickets for 'the coolest festival of the summer' (Observer Music Monthly) click here to book now.
Meltdown wouldn't be Meltdown without gigs spilling out of Royal Festival Hall into Southbank Centre's foyers and outside spaces. This year, hear late-night sets from Fuck Buttons (14 June), Mark Stewart & The Maffia + Adrian Sherwood (18 June), Alexis Taylor (Hot Chip) DJ Set (19 June), Trojan Sound System (20 June) and Malakai (21 June).
ART & LIGHTING AT MASSIVE ATTACK'S MELTDOWN...
Alongside the events in Meltdown, Massive Attack present art, lighting and installations inside and outside of Royal Festival Hall.
Volume by United Visual Artists - Riverside Terrace
Meltdown curators Massive Attack have invited United Visual Artists to exhibit an installation at Southbank Centre as part of Meltdown. Volume is an award winning sculpture consisting of a luminous array of light and sound emitting columns on Riverside Terrace. The facade of Southbank Centre is also transformed by light and the projection of a new collaboration with the charity organisation Reprieve.
Blast Theory's Day Of The Figurines - Level 1 Foyer Royal Festival Hall
Day Of The Figurines is an SMS game set in a grimy English town by internationally renowned artists' group Blast Theory.
Sign on at Royal Festival Hall and choose a figurine, then explore the town day by day. Fancy the death metal gig at the Locarno, or will you hang out at the cinema? From the Gasometer to the Rat Research Institute, up to 1,000 players roam the streets.
Reprieve Projections by United Visual Artists - Royal Festival Hall
UVA have created a large-scale projection for the east face of the Royal Festival Hall based on research and statistics provided by the charity Reprieve. The projection highlights the process of 'extraordinary rendition' and torture on terrorism suspects. To find out more, visit: www.reprieve.org.uk
Favoured Nations by Robert Del Naja - The Clore Ballroom at Royal Festival Hall
An installation of flags by Massive Attack's Robert Del Naja.
Wallpaper by Stanely Donwood - Central Bar at Royal Festival Hall
The letters and numbers are flight numbers from the varied aircraft used in connection with the programme called 'extraordinary rendition', a policy of kidnapping, torture and incarceration. This information comes from a book called Torture Taxi by Trevor Paglen and A C Thompson.
'Honor bound to defend freedom' is a motto of the prisons in US Naval Base Guantanamo Bay. There is more information on this in Bad Men by Clive Stafford Smith, Director of Reprieve.
The coloured squares in the background are shipping containers, which are frequently used as interrogation, incarceration and torture chambers. The image is a detail taken from Shipping Containers, 2007 by Chris Jordan.
The monochrome images in the background are wrist and leg-irons, the water torture, the interrogation chair and the 'Judas Cradle'. All are taken from Inquisition/ Inquisicion, a bilingual guide to the exhibition of torture instruments from the Middle Ages to the industrial era, presented in various European cities in 1985. The Guide was written by Robert Held.
Massive Attack tell the story of Meltdown in their own words in this year's festival programme. Also featuring exclusive Massive Attack artwork and photos, this limited edition publication is available for just £5 at all Meltdown gigs. Don't forget to pick up your copy at the festival.
12th May 2008
Meltdown has been extended with extra shows added and more artists announced. The festival now runs until 24 June, closing with an evening with MC5 and Primal Scream.Tickets for all new Meltdown events go on sale to Southbank Centre Members at 9am on Tuesday 13 May, then go on general sale at 9am on Wednesday 14 May.
NEW SHOWS ANNOUNCED...
AN EVENING WITH MC5 AND PRIMAL SCREAM
Tuesday 24 June 7.30pm, Royal Festival Hall
THE DUBSTEP CHRONICLES
MALA (Digital Mystikz), BENGA (Tempa), KODE9 (Hyperdub), SKREAM (Tempa), PINCH (Tectonic), HORSEPOWER (Tempa), THE MOODY BOYZ (Studio Rockers) + live band JAZZSTEPPA (Hotflush)
Tuesday 17 June 7pm-1am, The Front Room at Queen Elizabeth Hall
REPRIEVE AT MELDOWN Massive Attack have formed a close alliance with legal action charity Reprieve. As part of Meltdown, Reprieve presents a series of events including performances, screenings and discussions exploring the issues at the heart of their work. For more infomation on Reprieve, scroll to the bottom of this email.
FOURTEEN DAYS IN MAY Saturday 14 June 6.30pm, Purcell Room
Screening of the BFI award-winning documentary Fourteen Days In May recounting the final days before the execution of Edward Earl Johnson, an American prisoner convicted of rape and murder. The screening is followed by a discussion between the documentary's director Paul Hamann, Reprieve Director Clive Stafford Smith and exonerated death row prisoner Nick Yarris.
TAXI TO THE DARK SIDE Sunday 15 June 6.30pm, Purcell Room at Queen Elizabeth Hall
Screening of Academy Award-winning documentary on the controversial death of an Afghan taxi driver in US custody in Afghanistan, followed by post-screening discussion with Clive Stafford Smith, Director of Reprieve and released Guantanamo prisoner Moazzam Begg.
ICEANDFIRE PRESENTS RENDITION MONOLOGUES Saturday 21 June 8pm, Purcell Room
Rendition Monologues weaves together the first-hand testimonies of victims kidnapped and illegally transferred as terrorism suspects, and others considered to be implicated in the 'War on Terror', to nation states with a reputation for torture during interrogation. A long list of nations, including the UK, have colluded in these rendition flights.
Reprieve uses the law to enforce the human rights of prisoners, from death row to Guantanamo Bay. Reprieve investigates, litigates and educates, working on the frontline, to provide legal support to prisoners unable to pay for it themselves. The organisation promotes the rule of law around the world, securing each person's right to a fair trial and saving lives. Clive Stafford Smith is the founder of Reprieve and has spent 25 years working on behalf of people facing the death penalty in the USA and now represents 35 prisoners held in Guantanamo Bay.
To find out more visit www.reprieve.org.uk
Tickets for these events go on sale to Southbank Centre Members: 9am on 13 May. On sale to all: 9am on 14 May. For your best chance of getting tickets become a Member.
MORE ACTS ANNOUNCED...
RIZ MC supports Massive Attack Saturday 14 June, Royal Festival Hall
ADRIAN SHERWOOD supports Gong Saturday 14 June, Queen Elizabeth Hall
FUKIYA & MIYAGI and GEORGE PRINGLE support Tunng Saturday 21 June, Queen Elizabeth Hall
LEILA supports Massive Attack Sunday 22 June, Royal Festival Hall
THE FULL LINE-UP OF SILENT DISCO GUEST DJS IS NOW CONFIRMED:
DADDY G Friday 13 June
JAMES LAVELLE Saturday 14 June
PEACHES Thursday 19 June
KEIRAN HEBDEN AKA FOURTET Friday 20 June
ANDREW WEATHERALL Saturday 21 June
2nd May 2008
The Southbank Centre have just secured a limited number of tickets for Meltdown update subscribers for the exclusive Members-only Meltdown event on Thursday 8th May. To celebrate the launch of Meltdown, Massive Attack's Daddy G takes over Queen Elizabeth Hall and The Front Room for a night of the best emerging DJs and live bands from Bristol. This event features DJ sets from Daddy G and Bristol Hi Fi, and live performances from Malakai and Babyhead. This event has only been available to Southbank Centre Members.
From 1pm today a limited number of tickets go on sale to non-Members for just £15. Tickets are limited and will be available on a first come first served basis. To order them, phone 0871 663 2580 or visit the Ticket Office in Royal Festival Hall.
For a free ticket to this exclusive event and all the benefits that come with our membership scheme, become a Southbank Centre Member today >>
25th April 2008
Tickets for Meltdown are now on sale. Due to an unprecedented level of demand you may have experienced difficulties when booking, but if you missed out there's another chance to buy tickets from 9am on Monday 28 April. Extra tickets are being released exclusively to readers of The Observer for all Meltdown events*. Buy this Sunday's paper for the password you'll need to access these tickets.
If you can't get tickets to see Massive Attack's opening and closing concerts become a Southbank Centre Member for your chance to come to an exclusive Members Meltdown Event hosted by Daddy G on Thursday 8 May. The event features DJ sets from Daddy G and Bristol Hi Fi, and live performances from Malakai and Babyhead. Tickets are limited and will be available on a first come first served basis to Full and Dual Southbank Centre Members at 10am on Tuesday 29 April. We expect a high demand for these tickets so book early to avoid disappointment.
Click here become a Southbank Centre Member
* limited availability, subject to availability from 9am on Monday 28 April until Sunday 4 May.
www.southbankcentre.co.uk/meltdown | Ticket Office: 0871 663 2520
20th April 2008
From dub to the dark side
There's much more than trip hop at Massive Attack's Meltdown. Ally Carnwath talks to Robert Del Naja
In the past it has staged gigs chosen by reggae visionary Lee 'Scratch' Perry and punk icon Patti Smith. Last year the line-up included five middle-aged electropop artists wearing flowerpots as hats.
So, as the programme is announced for 2008's Meltdown - the exalted musical Jim'll Fix It in which a seminal act selects a wishlist of performers for a week-long festival at London's Southbank Centre - it's unlikely that anyone will ask Noel Gallagher if there are enough guitar bands playing.
Highlights of this year's festival, curated by Bristol electronic dub duo Massive Attack, will range from the esoteric - a rare British gig by the Japanese electronica outfit Yellow Magic Orchestra - to the showstopping - a performance by the iconic disco diva and one-time Warhol muse Grace Jones.
There will be guitars; influential punks Stiff Little Fingers and post-punks Gang of Four will perform. But hip hop, reggae and orchestral music are also well represented on a bill that Massive Attack say reflects the origins of their sound.
'The threads which run through it are to do with our heritage and the lineage we see ourselves fitting into,' explains the group's Robert Del Naja, aka 3D. 'There's our history in dub and reggae, the hip hop that got us into the studio and the connection we had to the punk and new wave scene.'
The return of Grace Jones will provide the line-up's main talking point. Last year she made a brief appearance at Jarvis Cocker's Meltdown; this time she will play a full-length set. 'We're totally chuffed to have her,' says Del Naja. 'Nightclubbing was a total soundtrack to getting around Bristol. She was a supernatural being and still is one of the world's truly unique bodies.'
One style conspicuously under-represented, though, is the Nineties Bristol sound which Massive Attack pioneered. They will open and close the festival with performances, and former Tricky collaborator Martina Topley Bird is on the bill, but some of the scene's biggest names - Portishead, Goldfrapp and Tricky - are absent.
Del Naja says this was a conscious decision: 'Meltdown was an opportunity to reach much further and see all the things that interested us from all continents. We're going to save that [the Bristol sound] for our Massive Attack-Portishead double-header stadium tour in 10 years when the tax men finally catch us.'
The festival's main cinematic coup is a preview showing of Shane Meadows' new film Somers Town. There will also be talks and films reflecting Massive Attack's interest in human rights, including Taxi to the Dark Side, a documentary by the Oscar-winning director Alex Gibney about the death of an Afghan taxi driver in US custody, followed by a discussion with former Guantánamo detainee Moazzam Begg.
But though politics and esoterica will never be far away, Del Naja says the main goal of Meltdown is the same as for all festivals. 'Although the Southbank Centre is not a crusty old disused building we've just broken into, this is like going back to the sound system nights we used to put on,' he says. 'It's an opportunity to throw a pretty wild party.'
Massive Attack's Meltdown runs from 14 to 22 June. For full details, visit southbankcentre.co.uk/meltdown
Highlights of Massive Attack's South Bank extravaganza:
Grace Jones - An Eighties icon, Jones released a string of disco and new wave records which are still regarded as classics of the genres · 19 June
Martina Topley Bird - Topley Bird's distinctive voice first hypnotised listeners on Tricky's trip-hop masterpiece Maxinquaye. Her 2003 solo debut, Quixotic, was Mercury-nominated · 18 June
Yellow Magic Orchestra - Featuring revered musician Ryuichi Sakamoto, YMO pioneered electro-pop in Seventies Japan· 15 June
Gang of Four - The post-punk band's angular sound has influenced contemporary artists from Franz Ferdinand to LCD Soundsystem · 20 June
19th April 2008
18th April 2008
The long awaited line-up for Massive Attack's Meltdown, Southbank Centre's largest contemporary music festival, is exclusively announced in The Observer this Sunday.
As Artistic Directors of this year's Meltdown, Massive Attack take over all 21 acres of Southbank Centre - including the riverside, Royal Festival Hall and Queen Elizabeth Hall - for nine days of concerts, DJ sets, talks, films and visual art specially chosen by Massive Attack.
FOR FULL LINE-UP DETAILS CHECK OUT THE OBSERVER THIS SUNDAY, and of course here on red lines.
Massive Attack follow in the mercurial footsteps of previous Meltdown Artistic Directors John Peel, Robert Wyatt, Scott Walker, David Bowie, Lee 'Scratch' Perry, Morrissey, Patti Smith and Jarvis Cocker.
For your best chance to get tickets become a Southbank Centre Member and get priority booking.
Phone 0871 663 2520 or visit
25th March 2008
Lazarides Gallery in London is proud to present War Paint, an exhibition of artworks inspired by the UNKLE album, War Stories, with works from Robert Del Naja, Warren du Preez, Nick Thornton Jones, William Bankhead and Ben Drury. When James Lavelle’s album War Stories was released in 2007, he collaborated with his long-term creative partner, Robert Del Naja, also known as 3D from Massive Attack. War Paint will feature paintings by 3D inspired by War Stories as well as works from other artists who have long-term working relationships with James and Del Naja.
The event will run 25th March - 25th April, from Tues thru Sat, 11am-7pm. Admission is free so be sure to stop by the Lazarides Gallery to check it out!
16th March 2008
12th March 2008
Rate the greatest Mojo magazine cover ever.
11th Match 2008
As has been previously reported, Massive Attack will curate this years Meltdown festival, at London's Southbank from 14th to 22nd June. The band promise new groups and established luminaries, plus films and orchestras. 3D says that he wants it to be musical, political and visual. "It's a step up from the parties we used to throw in Bristol." The line up will be announced soon apparently.
15th February 2008
/www.massiveattack.com has been drastically redesigned and updated.
14th February 2008
Massive Attack have been announced as Artistic Directors of the 15th Meltdown festival at Southbank Centre.
Following in the mercurial footsteps of previous directors John Peel, Robert Wyatt, Scott Walker, David Bowie, Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry, Morrissey, Patti Smith and Jarvis Cocker, the band bring to bear their considerable creativity to this unique festival. Ever since emerging out of the Bristol club scene in the late 1980s, Massive Attack have always been musical innovators, pushing barriers forward with every release and working with a wide range of collaborators including Tricky, Portishead, Liz Fraser, Sinead O’Connor, Mos Def and Damon Albarn.
“It's an honour to host Southbank Centre’s Meltdown Festival and to be in such inspiring company as its previous curators,” explained the band. “In addition to the music, we want this year's festival to have a strong political and visual element to it to reflect our influences and obsessions. Our aim is to mix it up a bit by instigating collaborations that make sense and probably some that don't.”
During Meltdown they take over all 21 acres of Southbank Centre - including the riverside, Royal Festival Hall and Queen Elizabeth Hall - for nine days of concerts, DJ sets, talks, films, and visual art as diverse as Massive Attack’s many influences and interests.
The full line-up for Massive Attack’s Meltdown which will include Terry Callier, will be announced soon.
24th January 2008
Bristol Hi-Fi with Daddy G, Queen Bee, Mr Benn & Souls Liberation
Dojo Lounge, 12-16 Park Row, Bristol, BS1 5LJ
Saturday 2 February, 11pm - 6am
£5 before 11.30, £7 after
Heated and covered outside terrace open all night!
After rocking Dojo back in December, Massive Attack’s Daddy G has settled in nicely for his only hometown residency as part of Bristol Hi-Fi. Comprising of G himself, Bristol stalwart Queen Bee, mash-up maestro Mr Benn and mic-master Souls Liberation, the Hi-Fi crew are a crack team of local talent responsible for moving the hips and feet of party people here, there and everywhere. Each throwing a different take on their shared love of bass culture into the mix, Bristol Hi-Fi blast out a heavy, heavy sound built on a solid foundation of reggae basslines and hip hop beats. The result is a hip-shaking mix of reggae, afro beats, Latin bass, rare grooves, funk, hearty hip hop and plenty of mash-up treats. So, find some room by the decks and get set for a night of Bristolian beats and bass, heavyweight dancefloor niceness and a proper party atmosphere...
21st January 2008
Free E4 Skins part hits Bristol
E4's hit comedy series Skins is rocking up the best music joints across the UK for a string of exclusive showcases to celebrate the launch of the second series this month. Friday February 8th sees the typically decadent parties hit Moton Park, Bristol with the top line up of Late Of The Pier, Courteeners, Massive Attack Djs, Skull Juice Djs, Dynamo Magician and Blow Pop Djs. These highly coveted tickets wil be free and available on a first come first served basis through e4.com, Myspace.com and Bebo.com. Go Go Go!