Here’s the new single from enigmatic steam-powered beat maestros The Gaslight Troubadours – which features a spoken-word guest vocal from, er, me… It comes from their second album Stranger Swings, which is due for Halloween release on 31 October 2018 via their own Purblind Productions imprint.
One Big Con features a wild sonic and visual collage of samples, clips and conspiracy theories. The lyric’s my tongue in cheek nod to the struggle of staying afloat in a tsunami of post-truth misinformation he says. Having bcome known as an anti-fascist campaigner in the punk era of Rock Against Racism, it’s unsettling to find even my own name has been appropriated by the far-right agitator Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, who’s now choosing to call himself “Tommy Robinson”
Despite holding strong views on current issues such as Brexit, Trump/Russia – and indeed Tommy Robinson – I’ve chosen to focus on historical controversies down the centuries ranging from believable to downright bonkers. Most people already know what they think about today’s volatile situation and don’t need any lectures on human gullibility from the likes of me…
The Gaslight Troubadours cite their influences as “scratchy old cylinder recordings, risqué Music Hall, 221b Baker Street, old radio show thrillers and Hammer Horror”. Although they’ve been described as “the dark, more twisted cousin of Public Service Broadcasting” their closest musical bedfellows are Mo’ Wax and the likes of DJ Shadow.
Their band’s acclaimed debut album Clockwork Curiosities was released in 2013 via ECC Records (home to Afro Celt Sound System, Jackie Oates and The Dhol Foundation) and achieved a 4/5-star rating in Mojo Magazine. It was followed in 2016 by founder member Professor Singleton Purblind’s solo release The Spectropic Illusions Of Professor Purblind which included two guest vocal appearances by Marc Almond on The House Is Haunted and Blue Spirit Blues and picked up airplay on BBC Radio 6 Music.
Stranger Swings is the band’s most ambitious outing to date, mixing vintage swing style beats and darker, sample heavy breakbeat tracks such as One Big Con. It features guest appearances by Professor Elemental, Neal X and Fey Pink as well as two guest vocals from me.
One Big Con is the second taster to be released from Stranger Swings, following last year’s electro swing single Psychedelic Freakshow (feat Fey Pink) which was released in November 2017. The video, produced by Square One Studios in collaboration with Wunderland Make-Up studio can be seen here.
Meanwhile, there’s an upcoming Tom Robinson+Band tour in the UK during October to mark the 40th anniversary of my debut album Power In The Darkness. Special guest on all dates is Lee Forsyth Griffiths, whose album Silence = Death is due for release on October 5th via Castaway Northwest.
Wed 03 NORWICH: Epic
Thu 04 Oct GREAT TORRINGTON: Plough Arts
Fri 05 Oct LYME REGIS: Marine Theatre
Sat 06 Oct BRIGHTON: Brighthelm Centre
Tue 09 Oct HUMBERSIDE: Ropery Hall
Wed 10 Oct BIRMINGHAM: Glee Club
Thu 11 Oct MANCHESTER: Band On The Wall
Fri 12 Oct DUBLIN: Whelan’s
Tue 16 Oct LEEDS: Brudenell
Wed 17 Oct GATESHEAD: Sage
Thu 18 Oct GLASGOW: King Tut’s
Fri 19 Oct LIVERPOOL: Philharmonic
Sat 20 Oct SOUTHAMPTON: The 1865
Tue 23 Oct CANTERBURY – Festival
Thu 25 Oct CARDIFF: The Globe
Fri 26 Oct OXFORD: Bullingdon
Sat 27 Oct LONDON: 02 Shepherds Bush Empire