The Screamadelica 12" Singles
Screamadelica is a messy album, frayed round the edges, different manifestations of a band (trad rockers, dancefloor warriors, zoned out dreamers) jostling for centre stage, and a multitude of voices making themselves heard: not just recently added musicians like keyboardist Martin Duffy and powerhouse singer Denise Johnson, but rave weirdos still learning to feel themselves round a studio like Hypnotone, The Orb and of course Andrew Weatherall. It’s appropriate given that messiness, that some of the greatest music being made in the process – including, with glorious perversity, the album’s title track – didn’t appear on the album itself but on 12" singles around it. This collection of those singles and offcuts is particularly notable for four peak early Weatherall moments. The “Scat Mix” of “Don’t Fight It, Feel It” brings cascading pianos to the fore, for total rave joy. “Screamadelica”, the track, is an extraordinary 11-minute vocoder funk chugger with Denise Johnson in starring role. The Weatherall instrumental of “Shine Like Stars” is a fantastic head-nod breakbeat groove. And best of all, the harpsichord riff and asteroids-colliding percussion in the “American Spring Mix” of “Higher Than the Sun” is one of the most truly narcotic pieces of music ever committed to recording media.