One, two, three, four, five… ten. Yes, ten. Morcheeba are back – and it’s with Blackest Blue that we enter the band’s soul in a raw, mercurial, and at times, harsh way, we feel a unique approach to the elements that make them up.
We look at our ‘music shelf’ and glimpse one of the timeless albums of our lives: Fragments of Freedom was released almost twenty-one years ago, but who doesn’t remember the classics Rome Wasn’t Built in a Day or Be Yourself?
And with this we sing, loud and clear, the famous lyrics of the first chant: “You and me, we’re meant to be, Walking free, in harmony, One fine day, we’ll fly away, Don’t you know that Rome wasn’t built in a day, Hey hey hey.”
Morcheeba are from the UK. They started their journey in 1995 and are currently made up of Skye Edwards and Ross Godfrey. A mention of honor will always have to go to Ross’ brother Paul, another of the band’s founders. There is also time to mention Daisy Martey, who replaced Skye when she left the band in 2003.
With no disrespect to Daisy, talking about Morcheeba is almost synonymous with talking about Skye. Her eloquent voice, accompanied by a unique presence and an elegance unmatched in the industry, make the band one of the most cherished projects by international audiences ever.
But let’s get back to the album, set in ten songs, 43 minutes apart.
This sublime journey begins with Cut My Heart Out. We are immediately put in our senses, with a fascinating and captivating beat, where the guitars own the way. Skye guides us, with her heaven-flaming angelic voice.
Killed Our Love, one of the singles from this album, is an instant classic, with all the basic recipes of the British band coming to the fore. We dance to the electronic flower of the song, with some of the most powerful vocal cords in the industry. The lyrics are raw and harsh, addressing the heartbreak of a family that is slowly falling apart. The tone of the music video takes on these more…dark contours. And although it’s always a tricky subject to tackle, we manage to move our feet to the end.
We move on to Sounds of Blue. And if the rhythm seems to be half stopped, we start, on the third theme, to feel that everything is connected and will, in fact, start to increase. And it’s with this Trip-Hop that we move in a dreamy way, remembering a trip of Edwards to Thailand, where he had the opportunity to dive and, at the bottom of the ocean, reencounter his greatest confidence and love for the depths of the sea. It reminded us of Alewya and Moses Boyd, on The Code theme. Electrifying.
On a more exotic note, Sulphur Soul is the instrumental we needed in our lives. It’s impossible to be indifferent to this mix of rhythms without shaking your head with a “yes, this is just what I wanted to hear right now”.
Fast forward to The Moon, which is a cover song by Croatian singer Irena Žilić. The Morcheeba vocalist was fascinated by the song in Zagreb while chatting with the artist from the Croatian capital. The meaning of it? To follow the light of the moon, harnessing its positive energy to escape depression and darkness. The ingredients are in place. And the urge to listen to the song on a loop, too, of course.
To finish, The Edge Of The World is the most groovy and danceable version of the album. With a collaboration with Duke Garwood, the symbiosis between the band and the singer can be felt with every passing second. It works so well that they all seem to have been together for years. And that’s the power of music. Unity makes strength, definitely.
Blackest Blue is just that: Morcheeba in review. More mature, they show that it is possible to unite the past with the present, glimpsing the future laughingly, with a new musical standard that promises to revolutionize the music industry.