A journalist who has spent five months researching Banksy's work believes that the trip-hop legends' founder Robert Del Naja is the man behind it all.
For more than two decades, art collectors and graffiti enthusiasts alike have speculated as to the true identity (or identities) behind Banksy, the artist whose socially and politically aware murals have regularly been valued in the hundreds of thousands of pounds.
Since a 2008 Mail on Sunday investigation, most people believe him to be ex-Bristol Cathedral School pupil Robin Gunningham, but a new investigation by journalist Craig Williams claims that Banksy is actually a collective of artists led by Bristol-based musician Robert Del Naja, the founder of British electronic music group Massive Attack.
Writing for the website Glasgow Live, Williams claims that five months of research have led him to the conclusion that Del Naja, known by his stage name ‘3D’, is the real identity of the iconic street artist.
Continue reading: Is Banksy Really Massive Attack's Founder Robert Del Naja?
Trip-hop pioneers Massive Attack have returned with a tantalising release after roughly 6 years since their gorgeous album 'Heligoland' released back in 2010. 'Ritual Spirit' is their first release of 2016, with the expectation of a second EP at some point and their 6th studio album to also be released within the year. Considering that their seminal debut album 'Blue Lines' will be clocking 25 years old this year, it makes sense that 'Ritual Spirit' brings in similar elements of their earlier work. This is not by any means to imply that their music has dated because it hasn't, Massive Attack are one of the few acts around that have always seemed slightly out of time. Their dense production, courtesy of Robert "3D" Del Naja and Grantley "Daddy G" Marshall, founding members of the band, has been incredibly influential in their melding of electronic dance music, hip-hop, soul, alternative rock and dub. What makes this recent outing all the more exciting as well is the return of Adrian "Tricky" Thaws, a founding member of the band who hasn't collaborated with Massive Attack since 1994's 'Protection'.
There is nothing particularly daunting about this EP in terms of its duration, as no track exceeds 5 minutes. However that does not mean there isn't incredible depth to what occurs within them. EP opener, 'Dead Editors' harkens back to Massive Attack's earlier music by incorporating Jungle rhythms which lurches into a Hip-Hop flow as Roots Manuva starts rapping. There's a menace behind the tension between the two as they interplay around each other. This is Massive Attack revealing their modern relevance; the capability to maintain bombastic beats that sound primitive yet futuristic at the same time.
'Ritual Spirit', the title track featuring Azekel demonstrates with tact the multicultural attributes to Massive Attack's incredibly influential sound. A somewhat jangly psychedelic guitar fiddles over hand drums, maracas and clapping with a mellow bass line that follows Azekel's soft and delicate vocals. Massive Attack's collaboration with spiritual successors Young Fathers is a slow building, paranoid track titled 'Voodoo in my Blood' that, although probably the weakest on the EP, really shows a lovely sense of cohesion that compliments the looming dread that permeates throughout this release. It is reminiscent of 'Safe From Harm', the opening track of their debut album 'Blue Lines', however it misses the mark slightly just because of the complexity of the other tracks in comparison.
Continue reading: Massive Attack - Ritual Spirit - EP Review
The seaside resort of Weston-super-Mare is hosting the artist’s new exhibition.
‘Dismaland’, the new exhibition by artist Banksy is causing crowds of thousands descend upon the seaside resort of Weston-super-Mare in the hope of getting tickets. The exhibition offers a dark and twisted take on a Disneyland style theme park, with installations including a distressed looking castle and an overturned Cinderella’s carriage.
Continue reading: Thousands Queue To Experience Bansky's Dark 'Dismaland' Exhibition
Terry Callier has passed away at the age of 67. The soul and jazz singer is probably best known for the song 'You Goin' Miss Your Candyman' and with a career than spanned six decades, found renewed interest in his work after his collaborations with artists such as Beth Orton and Massive Attack. Caliier died last night (Sunday, October 28, 2012), after suffering from a long illness, according to The Guardian.
Callier was born in 1945, in Chicago, where he counted Curtis Mayfield and Jerry Butler amongst his childhood friends. In 1962, he auditioned at the legendary Chess Records and recorded his debut single, 'Look At Me Now.' Six years later, he released his debut album, The New Folk Sound Of Terry Callier. His career slowed between his 1978 album Turn You To Love and the 1990s, when he stopped making music professionally and instead became a computer programmer at the University of Chicago. As a new generation of artists share their love for Callier's music in the 1990s, there was a resurgence of interest in Callier's songwriting.
One of those artists, the British songwriter Beth Orton, paid tribute to Callier, who recorded with him in 1997. She has paid tribute on her Twitter page, to her former collaborator, saying "This was one of the best nights of my life. Such a privilege and joy- RIP dear Terry Callier," with a link to the YouTube video (below) of her performing live. A host of other artists and DJs have also paid tribute to Callier, including Gilles Peterson and Tim Burgess of The Charlatans.
Continue reading: Cult Soul Hero Terry Callier Dies, Aged 67, Beth Orton Pays Tribute
David Gray has called for greater examination of the playing of loud music - including his own song Babylon - during torture at Guantanamo Bay.
Suspected terrorist detainees are repeatedly subjected to loud music during interrogation at Guantanamo and other US bases with a wide variety of songs used, from heavy metal acts such as Metallica and Rage Against The Machine, to hip-hop stars such as Eminem and Dr Dre to novelty tracks such as the theme song for Barney the dinosaur.
But speaking on BBC Radio 4's World Tonight programme, Gray called for greater public discussion of the matter.
"Only the novelty aspect of this story gets it noticed... Guantanamo greatest hits," he said.
"What we're talking about here is people in a darkened room, physically inhibited by handcuffs, bags over their heads and music blaring at them."
"That is nothing but torture."
He continued: "It doesn't matter what the music is - it could be Tchaikovsky's finest or it could be Barney the Dinosaur.
"It really doesn't matter, it's going to drive you completely nuts.
"No-one wants to even think about it or discuss the fact that we've gone above and beyond all legal process and we're torturing people," he added.
The charity Reprieve, which was associated with the recent Meltdown festival curated by Massive Attack, has created a petition to encourage artists to ban their music being used in the situations discussed by Gray.
Continue reading: David Gray Warns Of Music Use In Guantanamo Torture
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