Following the recent discovery of these tracks in a box lurking in Andrew Innes’ basement, Primal Scream will release the original studio recordings from Memphis of the tracks that eventually became their 1994 album ‘Give Out But Don’t Give Up’ October 5th on Sony Music Commercial Group.
Teaming up with legendary producer Tom Dowd and the Muscle Shoals rhythm section of David Hood (bass) and Roger Hawkins (drums) at Ardent Studios in Memphis, the resulting recordings from those classic sessions showcase the more country soul, rock’n’roll side to a band who continue to surprise. It’s Primal Scream as you’ve never heard them before.
Somewhere between 25 and 30 years ago I grew up in Somerset going to Glastonbury in the days before fences, when the travellers were waved through if they turned up in a bus and the Hell’s Angels were the greatest and most present threat.
In those days about one in five people there (or anywhere really) wore a Screamadelica t-shirt, and the album itself was likely to be blaring from a ghetto blaster, the magnetic tape already quiet and losing its bass from over-playing.
Anyway, Bobby Gillespie looked a tad rough back then, so tonight, resplendent in a matching neon pink shirt and drainpipe trousers, it doesn’t quite feel like it was a comfortable generation ago.
Primal Scream’s blend of electronica with traditional guitar rock felt pretty revolutionary then, and while it’s far from that now, actually its aged remarkably well. The tent is heaving, and it isn’t even raining (I think – possibly), so everyone’s here just to pogo about and feel happy.
The band are profoundly competent, neither milking the goodwill of the audience nor underplaying the classics. Gillespie gets the maximum of crowd participation with the minimum of fuss. The whole tent howling the “woo-woooo”s along to Loaded was sheer joy.
And when that was followed in quick succession by Country Girl, Get Your Rocks Off and Come Together I was reminded just how many stone-cold classics this band have under their crocodile-skin belts, and just how much they deserve to be here, far more relevant and present; far less of a nostalgia-fest, more like a band who are just a bit too good to ever really go away.