Morcheeba in concert, 2010
|Genres||Trip hop, alternative, adult contemporary downtempo|
Sire/Reprise/Warner Bros. Records
Originally from Hythe, Kent the Godfrey brothers (lyricist and DJ-producer Paul Godfrey and multi instrumentalist Ross Godfrey) moved to London when they were in their late teens. In 1995, the brothers were introduced to Skye Edwards after hearing her sing at a party. This led to the formation of Morcheeba. Together with engineer Pete Norris, the trio began producing tracks at their home studio. With the help of their manager Paul Ablett the band began to submit demo-tapes to record companies.
They were eventually signed to China Records by Angus Blair (A&R) and the band released their debut Trigger Hippie EP in October 1995. The band's debut album, Who Can You Trust? was released in April 1996 and fitted into the trip hop genre through a combination of Paul Godfrey's hip hop roots, Ross Godfrey's psychedelic rock influences and Edwards' soul-styled vocals. A second single Tape Loop appeared in July 1996. The band began to play live around Europe and North America augmented by a rotating number of hired hands on stage. At this point, the band had outgrown the home recording set-up and the brothers purchased their own studio. In 1997, they contributed to the David Byrne album "Feelings" participating in the recording and production of the release.
With a more professional recording set-up, the brothers began developing their ideas for a second album. Much of the material had already been written and with Norris involved again, the band moved towards a more mainstream sound. At the same time, Edwards appeared on the BBC charity single Perfect Day. The follow-up, 1998's Big Calm, moved slightly away from trip-hop towards a more pop-oriented, song-based sound. This was exemplified by the band's remaking of "Moog Island" (a song from the previous album) in a more summery, upbeat style, with the new title of "The Music That We Hear". One of the album's singles, "The Sea", became a radio favourite. Edwards considered the trip-hop label as 'kind of dated. It's more like a fashion thing. I never thought that we were in fashion, because when you're in fashion, you can only ever go out'. The album proved to be a big seller and ensured Morcheeba's success as a breakthrough act. In 1998, Morcheeba collaborated with Hubert Laws to record for the Red Hot Organization's compilation album Red Hot + Rhapsody, a tribute to George Gershwin, which raised money for various charities devoted to increasing AIDS awareness and fighting the disease.
In 2000, Morcheeba released their third album, Fragments of Freedom. This repeated the sales success of Big Calm but received a less positive critical response. The band's fourth album, Charango, was released in 2002, and spawned several singles including "Otherwise," "Way Beyond," and "Undress Me Now" (the release of the latter was cancelled, despite the creation and release of an expensive, erotic Balinese-inspired CGI video). In an indication of what would follow, several tracks on the album did not feature Edwards, and were instead written with and sung by Lambchop's Kurt Wagner or by emcees Pace Won and Slick Rick. In January 2003 the band undertook their first significant tour of the US since 1998.
By the end of 2003, the Godfrey brothers dismissed Edwards from Morcheeba, citing creative and personal differences. Edwards received 'a phone call from our manager saying that it was over, and it was a relief to think we didn’t have to continue'. She was under the impression that the band had ceased the operate. A greatest hits compilation, Parts of the Process, helped to retain interest in the band and featured two new tracks - "What's Your Name" (featuring a rhyming cameo from Big Daddy Kane) and "Can't Stand It." At around the same time, they released the live DVD Morcheeba: From Brixton to Beijing. A decade later Ross Godfrey reflected on this period saying that "We just felt like we couldn’t breathe, I’d been in the band and on the road since I was 18, so to have any kind of break from that was just amazing".
The two brothers reunited the year after, leaving Paul to explain that 'Ross and I realised that Morcheeba was kind of our family company, and that we wanted very much to keep it going, hence the change'. In 2005 Morcheeba released their fifth studio (and first post-Skye Edwards) album, The Antidote. Daisy Martey (formerly of the band Noonday Underground) was recruited to replace Edwards as the album vocalist. However, Martey's period with the band was brief and she was sacked in the middle of the promotional tour, to be replaced by Jody Sternberg. Martey subsequently sued the band for breach of contract and defamation. Sternberg's own tenure with the band was similarly brief, and she only appears to have been part of the band to fulfil tour dates.
After a break of several years, Morcheeba released their sixth studio album, Dive Deep in February 2008. On this album, the Godfrey brothers emphasised their role as producers creating a set of instrumental tracks entirely sung by a roster of guest performers—cult folk-rock singer Judie Tzuke, Norwegian singer-songwriter and former Jaga Jazzist collaborator Thomas Dybdahl, blues singer/guitarist Bradley Burgess, Korean-American rapper Cool Calm Pete, and French singer Manda (Amanda Zamolo). Both Manda and Burgess toured with Morcheeba as lead singers on their 2008 tour.
As a solo artist, Edwards remained with the same management company as Morcheeba, which led to a chance meeting in their London offices sometime in 2009. Edwards and the Godfrey brothers met again to discuss her possible involvement in a new project. Initially the singer was hesitant and pointed out that she 'really enjoyed doing my solo stuff and writing my own lyrics'. Eventually Edwards rejoined the band and the trio began work on a new album. With Edwards still on tour promoting her solo album, Ross Godfrey living in California and Paul Godfrey in London, the band didn't 'spent much time in the same room together' while recording. On 12 February 2010, NME revealed that Edwards was once again working with the band, which was confirmed by Paul Godfrey the day after on the band's Myspace blog. Edwards made her live return with the band at the Caprices Festival, Switzerland on 9 April 2010. Edwards role in the band changed as she had 'become more confident in my ability as a singer and a songwriter' and found that during the recording process they were 'more honest with each other, and [thus] we have a more honest record'.
Morcheeba released their seventh album Blood Like Lemonade on PIAS in June 2010, preceded by the single 'Even Though'. It was produced by Paul Godfrey, who described the album as 'a warm, fuzzy blanket of psychedelia' while Edwards found the lyrics as 'having dark themes' she also remarked how the brothers had made her part of the creative process. An eighteenth-month tour followed that saw the band play around the Americas and Europe.
Their eighth album, Head Up High was released on October 14, 2013 again on PIAS. When touring the band currently consists of Sky Edwards (vocals), Ross Godfrey (guitars) Steve Gordon (bass), Richard Milner (keyboards), Martin Carling (drums) and James Anthony (decks).
- "Never an Easy Way" (from Who Can You Trust? release) was used in the opening sequence of the episode "Passion" (season 2, episode 17) of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, partly under the narrative voiceover of the character Angel/Angelus (played by David Boreanaz).
- "Everybody Loves a Loser" was featured in the first season for the television series, Hung, and was included on its soundtrack album issued in June 2010.
- "Be Yourself" was covered by the top 5 contestants of American Idol: Season 10. The recording was used in the show's weekly Ford commercial.
|Year||Album details||Peak chart positions||Certifications
|1996||Who Can You Trust?||57||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||-|
|2000||Fragments of Freedom
|2010||Blood Like Lemonade
|2013||Head Up High||99||-||39||25||75||-||-||-||-||-|
|"—" denotes releases that did not chart.|
Compilation albums and others
- Beats & B-Sides (1996)
- La Boule Noire (1998) (live bootleg)
- Back to Mine (2001)
- Parts of the Process (The Very Best of Morcheeba) (2003) - #6 UK UK: Gold
- The Platinum Collection (2005)
- Get Mashed (by Kool DJ Klear) (2005) (unofficial bootleg)
- The Works: A 3 CD Retrospective (2007)
|1996||"Trigger Hippie"||40||—||—||—||—||—||—||—||Who Can You Trust?|
|"Never an Easy Way"||—||—||—||—||—||—||—||—|
|1997||"The Music That We Hear (Moog Island)"||47||—||—||—||—||—||—||—|
|"Shoulder Holster"||53||—||—||—||—||—||—||—||Big Calm|
|"Let Me See"||46||—||—||—||46||—||—||—|
|"Part of the Process"||38||—||—||—||—||—||—||—|
|"Summertime"||—||—||—||—||—||—||—||—||Red Hot + Rhapsody: The Gershwin Groove|
|2000||"Rome Wasn't Built in a Day"||34||—||48||82||2||—||33||—||Fragments of Freedom|
|2001||"World Looking In"||48||—||36||—||—||—||—||—|
|"Undress Me Now"||—||—||—||—||—||—||—||—|
|2003||"What's Your Name" (feat. Big Daddy Kane)||—||—||—||—||—||—||—||—||Parts of the Process|
|2005||"Wonders Never Cease"||86||—||—||86||—||114||—||—||The Antidote|
|"Everybody Loves a Loser"||—||—||—||—||—||—||—||—|
|2008||"Enjoy the Ride"||182||—||—||—||—||163||—||—||Dive Deep|
|"Gained the World"||—||—||—||—||—||180||—||—|
|2010||"Even Though"||—||—||—||—||—||251||—||—||Blood Like Lemonade|
|"Blood Like Lemonade"||—||—||—||—||—||—||—||—|
|2013||"Gimme Your Love"||—||123||—||—||—||—||—||—||Head Up High|
|"—" denotes releases that did not chart.|
- "Official Chart" UK Chart postitions
- "BBC Kent" Ross Godfrey interviewed on BBC Radio Kent by Jacob Rickard, 12 October 2013 (UK only)
- "Paul Godfrey" production credits
- "Ross Godfrey" production credits
- "CC interview" Bob Gourley 'Morcheeba interview with Ross Godfrey', Chaos Control magazine August 1998
- "Skye Edwards interview" Teddy Jamieson, 'Skye high as Morcheeba return' The Herald (Scotland), 15 November 2013
- "Pete Norris interview" Tom Flint 'Pete Norris: Recording Morcheeba's 'Rome Wasn't Built In A Day' Sound On Sound October 2000
- "Vex Management Paul Ablett CV
- "1996" Scattered 1996 dates - incomplete
- "NYC live review" Doug Levy 'New York City Hall' live review in the NME November 16, 2000
- "Sound On Sound Morcheeba studio 1997" Sue Sillitoe, 'Morcheeba: From Clapham to The Orb' Sound On Sound, December 1997
- "Byrne collaboration" Gil Kaufman 'David Byrne Collaborates With Morcheeba', MTV News (Addicted to Noise) December 3, 1996
-  Steve Klinge, 'Singer can't label Morcheeba' The Inquirer, January 17, 2003
- Strong, Martin C. (2000). The Great Rock Discography (5th ed.). Edinburgh: Mojo Books. p. 660. ISBN 1-84195-017-3.
- "Gimme Noise" Jen Edwards, 'Morcheeba: The revealing extended interview', Gimme Noise, February 13, 2011
- "Culture Compass: Sky interview 2010" Leila Hawkins, 'Exclusive, Sky Edwards, Morcheeba', Culture Compass, June 14, 2010
-  Wyndham Wallace, 'Specs, Drugs & Rock & Roll: True Stories Of Morcheeba', The Quietus, October 18th, 2013
- "OMH Interview with Paul Godfrey" Ben Hogwood 'Interview - Morcheeba' music OMH, 3 August 2005
- "Gigwise newsitem" Daniel Melia, 'Former Morcheeba singer sues Bandmate for assault' Gigwise, 5th January 2006
- "CMO Management" Brendan Coyle of CMO Management represents both artists
- "Guestlisted interview" Leigh, Sky Edwards interview (2010), Digging A Hole, August 21, 2010
- "IndieLondon interview with Paul Godfrey" 'Morcheeba - The IndieLondon interview', IndieLondon, June 2010
- "Morcheeba to be rejoined by former singer for first time since 2003" (news story in NME, 12 February 2010)
- "Joe's Pub press release"
- "Morcheeba Announce New Album 'Head Up High' Released October 14th 2013". contactmusic.com. Retrieved 2013-08-14.
- Morcheeba -- The Band That Faked Being Trip-hop, by Candace Murphy; at the Chicago Tribune; published April 24, 1998; retrieved December 15, 2013
- "Discography Morcheeba". theofficialcharts.com. Retrieved 2011-10-30.
- "Discography Morcheeba". Australian-Charts.com. Retrieved 2011-10-30.
- "Discographie Morcheeba". AustrianCharts.at. Retrieved 2011-10-30.
- "Discographie Morcheeba" (in French). lescharts.com. Retrieved 30 October 2011.
- "Discography Morcheeba". Charts.ord.nz. Retrieved 2011-10-30.
- "Discography Morcheeba". norwegiancharts.com. Retrieved 30 October 2011.
- "Discography Morcheeba". Charts.ord.nz. Retrieved 2011-10-30.
- "Discography Morcheeba". billboard.com. Retrieved 2011-10-30.
- "Certified Awards Search". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved on 2011-10-30. Note: User needs to enter "Morcheeba" in the "Search" field, "Artist" in the "Search by" field and click the "Go" button. Select "More info" next to the relevant entry to see full certification history.
- "Certified Awards Search". Music Canada. Retrieved on 2011-10-30. Note: User needs to enter "Morcheeba" in the "Search" field, "Artist" in the "Search by" field and click the "Go" button. Select "More info" next to the relevant entry to see full certification history.
- "Certified Awards Search". Syndicat National de l'Édition Phonographique. Retrieved on 2011-10-30.
- Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 378. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
- Chart Log UK: M Zobbel.de
- Morcheeba discography irish-charts.ie
- allmusic ( Morcheeba > Charts & Awards > Billboard Singles )
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