In 20 Jazz Funk Greats Drew Daniel (of the experimental band Matmos) creates-through both his own insights and exclusive interviews with the band-an exploded view of the album’s multiple agendas: a series of close readings of each song, shot through with a sequence of thematic entries on key concepts, strategies, and contexts (noise, leisure, process, the abject, information, and repetition). This is a smart and unusual book about a pioneering band.
“Daniels is a lucid and engaging writer who captures the struggle of a band that felt increasingly trapped by its own accomplishments and confined by the conventions of a genre that it hadn’t really wanted to create.” —Signal to Noise
“Always perverse, Throbbing Gristle was perhaps never more so than on their 1979 release, 20 Jazz Funk Greats. From the cover art, which at first glance appears to your standard “band outdoors” snap, (but is actually the group assembled at Britain’s Beachy Head, a suicide hotspot) to the almost “normal” synth pop found within, TG deliberately alters reality until it nearly comes back around- nearly. Drew Daniel, one half of the electronic group Matmos, draws on new interviews with the group to craft a look at one of music’s most extreme, intense and provocative artists, who delighted here in subtle rearrangements of benign elements into darker statements, such as captured field recordings of young children, mashed against a simple drum machine to create “Persuasion”. Daniel ably illustrates the sheer brilliance of the record, in which TG turned down the volume but upped the intensity of their message. At nearly 200 pages this is one of the longer “33 1/3” releases, but is such a captivating look at the legendary group of pop culture provocateurs that you won’t put it down.” –The Big Takeover
“amazing.” —Robin McConnell, Inkstuds
184 page paperback