Two nice posts about the early Tricky on the “Unheard Music” blog. It’s from the time he made the Maxinquaye album. First post is about a Deluxe edition of the Maxinquaye album recently released. Second post is even more interesting, featuring two unreleased versions of the Aftermath tune.
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And if someone would wonder who this Tricky might be:
Tricky, an original member of Massive Attack, left the band to record his own tracks with his then girlfriend, Martina Topley-Bird, who provided much of the vocals on his releases. His earliest releases sit nicely alongside Portishead’s debut, Dummy, although that album focused on the beautiful sadness in Beth Gibbons’ vocals, whereas Tricky and Martina painted a far grimmer picture, awash in druggy atmospherics and Tricky’s haunting drawl. Martina’s vocals, on the other hand, were quite beautiful and powerful, making for interesting creations when she rapped hard lyrics like those in their cover of Public Enemy’s Black Steel, or when she sang that she’d “fuck you in the ass, just for a laugh” in Abbaon Fat Track, as if it were sweet nothings to her lover, although you got the impression she may have drugged him.
If you get the picture, then imagine these grim lyrics drenched in broken beats, rich soundscapes and dark and heavy dubs. The result was one of the densest and most claustrophobic albums to emerge from the mid-‘90s trip-hop boom. Maxinquaye was a near perfect album and it’s surely a good thing it has been re-released as even today the music blasts out of your speakers, creating a total atmosphere of end-of-days paranoia.