I don’t want to write ‘lyrics’ anymore, or ‘sing’ them,
or inflict them on good music. I’m tired of ‘vocals’,
bored with most singers & repelled by ‘frontmen’ who are
conscious of their identity.
Having been an abuser of all these at some point for years
I have come to a fork in the road – carry on doing things
the same or try to change? Change, doesn’t come easy
& there are no schools or night classes one can
attend in order to expand one’s mind, nor shops at
which to buy new tools & skills. Other ‘singers’
I have spoken to in the past have all expressed
enthusiasm for exchanging experiences & ideas,
but none maintain anything like the rigour nor sustained
dedication I crave for an open & continuous dialogue between
passionate & creative people. All too often their genuine
enthusiasm is set aside for the next scheduled record, delivered
in a style that perpetuates their image of themselves – I’m
tired of that process.
When UW MKII was first brought together by Rick there
was no place for ‘singers’, ‘lyricists’ or ‘frontmen’.
The industry rejected our music with an instruction
to ‘get rid of the singer if we wanted to make
dance music or get a drummer if we wanted to keep
the singer’. There was no place for me within that
current industry mindset & had it not been for Rick’s
open-minded willingness to experiment with the
‘idea of voice’, his skill in integrating ‘voice as a
sound source’ plus my desire to relinquish ‘singer traditions’
& be open to change UW would be a very different entity.
In revisiting UW of twenty years ago for the ‘Dubnobass..’
re-issue I’ve immersed myself in the mind-set of
twenty-year-younger-Hyde , the thoughts, influences, fears &
insecurities that drove him to break with his own myopic traditions
& try working without a safety net in order to bring what he did
to the studio for Rick to then create what remains the first of
my two favourite UW albums (‘Second Toughest…’ being the other).
I’m ashamed to say, I turned back into a version of the very thing
we were rejecting back then – a ‘singer-frontman-lyricist’.
My friends ‘Efterklang’ recently decided to continue as, but
stop, ‘being Efterklang’ in order that they might not become
a cartoon of themselves & I applaud them for what some may call
bravery, others stupidity, which to me is common sense.
As artist, people who live by creating new things, we have
to keep changing or our art shrivels up, becomes ‘imitation’,
a memento of a brand, a keep-sake, a souvenir fridge magnet.
I love words, love making sounds with my voice & love
using these things in public performance & the more ‘live’
the better! I have no idea where the other fork in the road
goes, I do, however, know where the ‘safe’ road leads
& I don’t want to travel it any more.