JJ Burnel : The John Robb interview : JJ on the upcoming ‘grown up’ album, Dave Greenfield and how to grow up creatively

It’s been a tumultuous year for everybody and maybe even more so for one of the classic UK bands, The Stranglers.

The tragic death of brilliant keyboard player Dave Greenfield a year ago seemed to have marked the end of the group but they have emerged with an upcoming UK tour and brilliant new album, Dark Matters, which we have been the first to hear.

The album sees Dave Greenfield’s last ever contributions on 8 of the songs with varied trademark keyboard flurries that could well be some of the best work of his career. There is also plenty of the hallmark black belt bass, live drums giving a new feel and Baz Warne at his snarling and tuneful best and yet it traverses many different styles and is consistently their best for years sitting comfortably with older classics and is the modern era band’s best work – even better than the great comeback Norfolk Coast.

It’s a magnificent work and has a serious chance of going top five on its release in a few months. The album ranges from acoustic pieces to the dark post-punk prog to the curiously classic three-minute rushes that the band were also great at as well as a lyrically and melodically baroque sixties pop. There is so much in there that it is a world to get lost in.

In this interview, JJ talks about the album, gets emotional about the death of his close friend Dave, how Jet is still very much in the band orbit, how the new line up works, how they write songs and how this is finally their grown up album…

johnrobbhttps://www.facebook.com/themembranesAward winning journalist and boss of Louder Than War. In a 30 year music writing career, John was the first to write about bands such as Stone Roses and Nirvana and has several best selling music books to his name. He constantly tours the world with Goldblade and the Membranes playing gigs or doing spoken word and speaking at music conferences.

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