ABCDEFG (album)

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ABCDEFG
Studio album by Chumbawamba
Released 1 March 2010 (2010-03-01)
Recorded late 2009
Genre Folk, pop
Label No Masters
Chumbawamba chronology
The Boy Bands Have Won
(2008)
ABCDEFG
(2010)
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3.5/5 stars[1]
The Music Fix (7/10)[2]

ABCDEFG is the 14th and final studio album by Chumbawamba. It was officially released on 1 March 2010, but copies ordered from the band's website arrived the week before.[3]

Album information[edit]

ABCDEFG continues the five person line up of Lou Watts, Jude Abbott, Neil Ferguson, Boff Whalley and Phil 'Ron' Moody. The album's lyrical content focuses mainly on themes to do with music and singing.

"Wagner at the Opera" refers to a concentration camp survivor who disrupted a Wagner recital by swinging a football rattle.[4][5][6]

"Torturing James Hetfield" is a response to James Hetfield's approval of the use of Metallica's music as a torture device against Iraqi prisoners at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp.[7][8] The song was described as depicting a "wonderful image" by Stefan Appleby in BBC Review.[9] Boff Whalley listed the song as one of his favourites in July 2011.[10]

"You Don't Exist" is a song about the Klaus Renft Combo, who were once informed by the East German government that their music was no longer allowed to be performed.

The song "Ratatatay" is about The Ursonate, a sound poem by Kurt Schwitters.

Track listing[edit]

  1. Introduction – 1:01
  2. Voices, That's All – 3:30
  3. Pickle – 2:43
  4. Wagner at the Opera – 2:13
  5. Underground – 3:30
  6. Torturing James Hetfield – 2:17
  7. The Devil's Interval – 4:00
  8. Hammer, Stirrup & Anvil – 3:04
  9. Puccini Said – 2:02
  10. That Same So-So Tune – 2:35
  11. Singing Out the Days – 2:18
  12. You Don't Exist – 2:36
  13. The Song Collector – 3:26
  14. Missed – 1:40
  15. Ratatatay – 3:40
  16. New York Song – 1:13
  17. Dance, Idiot, Dance – 2:43

Personnel[edit]

  • Chumbawamba: Neil Ferguson, Lou Watts, Boff Whalley, Jude Abbott & Phil Moody
  • Ray 'Chopper' Cooper – cello on 3, 5 & 7, harmonica on 12
  • Jon Boden – fiddle on 2, 7 & 12
  • Belinda O'Hooley – piano on 3, 6 & 7, backing vocals on 3
  • Heidi Tidow – backing vocals on 3
  • Harry Hamer – cajon on 2, 7 & 15
  • Jo Freya – Saxophone on 10, 15 & 17
  • 'Dance, Idiot, Dance' performed by "the massed No Masters Co-operativists" with Lester Simpson on lead vocals
  • Brass by Charlie Cake Marching Band, arr. Jude Abbott
  • Strings by Whingate Ensemble, arr. Neil Ferguson

References[edit]

  1. ^ Allmusic review
  2. ^ The Music Fix review
  3. ^ "Chumbawamba - ABCDEFG". Chumba.com. Retrieved 8 October 2011. 
  4. ^ "Music - Review of Chumbawamba - ABCDEFG". BBC. Retrieved 8 October 2011. 
  5. ^ "(AWS) - Wagner at the Opera". Antiwar Songs. Retrieved 8 October 2011. 
  6. ^ Gozani, Ohad (2000-10-28). "Holocaust demo as Israelis play Wagner". Telegraph. Retrieved 8 October 2011. 
  7. ^ "Chumbawamba -Torturing James Hetfield - Sidmouth Folk Week 2010 (Manor Pavilion) video". NME. Retrieved 7 December 2011. Metallica's lead singer James Hetfield expressed his satisfaction when told that the US army used one of the group's songs to break the will of Iraqi prisoners. Chumbawamba imagines retaliation... 
  8. ^ "Chumbawamba - Guest Editors". Spiral Earth. 22 February 2010. Retrieved 7 December 2011. [...] James Hetfield comes out and says he’s proud their music has been used to torture Guantanamo prisoners “It represents something that they don’t like—maybe freedom, aggression… I don’t know… Freedom of speech.“ Although he thinks music and politics don’t mix – obviously. So writing a song about torturing James Hetfield with Chumbawamba’s music was irresistible. 
  9. ^ Appleby, Stefan (9 March 2010). "Chumbawamba ABCDEFG Review". BBC Review. BBC. Retrieved 7 December 2011. [...] and the wonderful image of Metallica's frontman being tortured by listening to Chumbawamba at ear-splitting volume (Torturing James Hetfield) [...] 
  10. ^ "Boff Whalley: Chumbawamba Interview". The New Significance. 29 July 2011. Retrieved 7 December 2011. I have a few [personal favourite Chumbawamba songs], I think. [...] And ‘Torturing James Hetfield’ [...]