g Soul Family Sensation make sweet. ’ sweet dance music. Hey. they even get a Marshall Jefferson remix. But. as Craig McLean discovers, they‘re really just indie kids at heart.
On opposite sides of the dancefloor the music‘s getting polarised. Hard. clinical. abrupt tracks by acts with hard. clinical. abrupt names — Oceanic. Prodigy. Arnee and the Terminators — vie for the attention and the shekels with softer. smoother. smoochier outfits whose club apparel is altogether more refined. We‘ve had Yo Yo Honey. B.E.F.. Bomb The Bass. and now here‘s Soul Family Sensation. the latest slinkers to move our bodies in the soulful way.
‘We come across as a band rather than just a soul project.‘ says programmer Guy Batson. ‘Obviously there‘s souly-ish songs there. but none of us are real soul boys. We‘re more into the dance side ofthings‘. We could be forgiven for thinking otherwise. Thus far in pop‘s scrapbook. Soul Family Sensation are cross-referenced with the words ‘mellow‘ and ‘moocher'. tags picked up when the bands 1 Don '1 Even Know If] Should
Call You Baby single started attracting interested lglances earlier in the summer. Coming spruced up [in a sublime Marshall Jefferson remix. Baby was a lthing ofgraee and artful poise when all around was 'a sea ofcomputer-generated techno hardware. Its . air of authentic grooving is even more surprising lconsidering the decidedly white and indie hue of the songs' creators.
3 Prior to SFS the boys in the band killed time in ‘a I heads down. no nonsense indie guitar band‘ —
l being Guy’s description of their old outfit Metro gTrinity‘s oeuvre. ‘And I bought a sequencer and a
j keyboard and started messing around . . .‘ So when 1 Metro Trinity failed to get beyond the ldemo-time-for-a-label stage. they cast their eyes
‘We were just doing that because everybody was getting into dance music and going to clubs and stuff. We began to fiddle around — then we came up with this song Beat Author which was the B-side of Baby. It's a really hard instrumental track. Hammond organ. bit of piano and stuff. One Little Indian managed to hear it. and they gave us some demo time to go and do it properly.‘
Out of those sessions came Baby. Still singer-less at this point however. pianist Peter Zivkovic came across Jhelisa Anderson via his jazz connections. and next thing you know her silky vocals have been roped in. Cue further reworking of the track. . . ‘We took it away to make it sound more modern. So we stuck a Fool's Gold (oh. bang up to date- Ed) loop in it because that‘s the only loop we
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had. and that altered the whole image of the track‘.
One Little Indian were sufficiently impressed. Having retrieved .Ihelisa from some cruise ship out Alaska way. the hand signed. and Baby was released late last year. Despite only reaching lllJ in the charts. it did reach the ears of I louse doyen Jefferson. When his original intention — releasing the track on his own label Stateside ~ fell through. the benevolent Mr .leffcrson offered to remix the track for free. 'l‘hereby a latterday soul killer was born. When it was re-releascd a few months later. the track fulfilled its earlier promise.
Next up is the second single Per/eel Life. to be followed in the autumn by the album New Ware. W’hile the follow-up continues with its predecessors preoccupation with the smooth. the album periodically teeters towards the tougher end ofthe dance spectrum. but remains forever impeccably turned out.
‘We wanted to make a record that —» and this is really cliched — you could listen to at home. When we were doing the album we were very aware that
GM FOLLOWING PAGES: CLUB NEWS
a lot of these clul‘ tracks are good singles. then the rest of the album is really really boring So w e wanted to make eyery hit of music on the album a song within itself. make it easily lisienable. but still ll;t\ e the modern aspects lii ll..
Whether this mix of the classic and the innoy atiyc \yot‘k‘s \\ lll lie there hit all ltl see when Soul I’amily Sensation appear in unlikely supporting role to I’loyyei'edl p remains to be seen. Next to the latter”s lieer‘y . niad rock. SI-S’s soul relincr‘y yy ill appear positively genteel. "llici'e is a soft side to the band. like on record. admits (iiiy. ‘but for these shows l’y c chosen the songs that don’t work on D.\ l'. and then we‘ll programme them all up and run them II\ c. It makes it a lot more . .lnml.‘
‘Ilis jtlsl lk‘c‘tl a I‘ll til a shock lo its that people expect its to be this hip soul band. when were not. were [tlsl indie l'sltl\i.
.S’ou/ l‘tllHl/l' Selim/ion rip/mun! Hie liuiiii'i (i/iiyeou‘wi .i Se/il along It'll/l glut/y ‘( [inf II'r'ul/ri'm/l. sari/l/m'i'ni't'. (Hit/t), ( oiiryi' l but well (7).
“re list .ill .»\ii:‘.-s'. l-‘. September NW 61