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Skint & Demoralised

Idioma disponível: inglês
Mixing smart wordplay with music that crosses indie rock with funk and R&B grooves, Skint & Demoralised is a collaboration between vocalist and lyricist Matt Abbott and producer and composer David Gledhill, aka MiNI dOG. Though he sometimes sings, most of the time Abbott recites his verses in an urgent yet down-to-earth voice like a streetwise poet as Gledhill leads the musical accompaniment for his words. The duo won a small following by posting their songs on social media and earned a major-label deal with their debut album, 2009's Love & Other Catastrophes, a set informed by Northern soul and indie rock. While that album was pulled at the last minute, the duo found a new home on an indie imprint and released their second effort, 2011's This Sporting Life, which eased up on the grooves and played up the indie rock guitar figures. They added electronic accents to 2013's The Bit Between the Teeth, and when S&D returned from a hiatus in 2019 with the single "Boro Kitchen 4am," their music had developed a sharper edge and a more political outlook. Skint & Demoralised came together in 2007. Matt Abbott was a former stand-up comic from Wakefield, England who had turned to writing poetry, writing material with an observational and activist bent and performing it in the style of two of his inspirations, Linton Kwesi Johnson and John Cooper Clarke. Abbott made rough recordings of some of his poems and posted them online; meanwhile producer and songwriter David Gledhill, who worked under the name MiNI dOG, had heard Abbott's work and offered to collaborate, fitting his performances to musical backing tracks. They cut a demo tape that was written up in the U.K.'s music newspaper New Musical Express, while a second demo caught the ear of BBC Radio 1 DJ Steve Lamacq, who spun the song "Red Lipstick" on his show. After a few more plays on the BBC, major-label scouts began looking at Skint & Demoralised, and in March 2008 the duo signed a deal with the Universal-distributed Mercury label. Abbott and Gledhill headed to New York City to begin working on their first album, with members of retro-soul favorites the Dap-Kings serving as their backing band. The singles "The Thrill of Thirty Seconds," "This Song Is Definitely Not About You," and "Red Lipstick" were well-reviewed and the band got solid press, but none of the releases lived up to Mercury's expectations in terms of sales, and the label scrapped the release of the completed album, Love & Other Catastrophes, dropping the group from their roster. Bloodied but unbowed, Skint & Demoralised won back the rights to their unreleased album and began work on their second LP. They teamed up with the independent Heist or Hit Records, which released Skint & Demoralised's second album, 2011's This Sporting Life, while also giving Love & Other Catastrophes a belated public release the same year. (The two albums were available individually and in a two-fer package.) They completed a 20-date U.K. tour in support and headlined a pair of festivals in Germany. In 2012, Skint & Demoralised returned to the studio to write and record a third album, The Bit Between the Teeth. The album was released in April 2013, though the death of Margaret Thatcher the same day meant the media's attention was elsewhere. The album didn't attract much notice anyway, and the duo went on hiatus. However, the British television series Gavin & Stacey featured two songs by Skint & Demoralised in the show's third season, first aired in 2010, and as the fame of co-creator and co-star James Corden grew, the show's re-runs and DVD releases helped introduce the music to new listeners. In November 2018, Gledhill contacted Abbott about writing and recording new music, and Abbott quickly agreed. By April 2019, Skint & Demoralised's fourth album, the tough-sounding Boro Kitchen 4am, was released by the respected U.K. indie label Fierce Panda.
© Mark Deming /TiVo
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