15 giugno 2014

Miles Mellough di Birds with Broken Wings traccia un ritratto di Stuart Moxham nella brevissima stagione di Young Marble Giants e The Gist all'esordio degli anni Ottanta, appena prima delle opere soliste: Lo-Fi King for a Day. In attesa del nuovo capitolo con Louis Philippe, ormai di imminente pubblicazione.

Amidst the din of the unrestrained punk rock that surrounded them back in 1979, the Cardiff, Wales, trio of coolly, detatched vocalist Alison Statton, songwriter-guitarist-organist Moxham, and his bass-playing brother Philip eschewed noise at all costs. With just an organ, guitar, and vocals, played over beats emanating from a crude, tiny nuts 'n' bolts drum machine that had been recorded on a cassette tape, Young Marble Giants unleashed a uniquely quiet, ever-so-subtle strain of lo-fi, post-punk pop. Moxham and his band mates stripped their sound down to the very bone - removing all the meat and leaving behind no fat whatsoever. Theirs was absolutely the most skeletal that could be achieved; no overdubs and no production values whatsoever save the occasional guitar reverb. The drum machine beats I mentioned were virtually identical to those they used in their live show (apparently the solitary cassette tape was the only source for drum sounds that they ever had, or needed). The trio recorded Colossal Youth over a period of five short days, and completed the mixing in a mere 20 minutes. Yet despite its austerity, the atmosphere contained in Colossal Youth remains unparalleled by any other recording made prior, or since. As writer, Ken Taylor has said of the the group and their sole LP, "Young Marble Giants secretively brought more darkness and angst into the record collections of British kids than any smack-addled punk band ever could. Alison Statton's disaffected voice so strangely belies the emotions that were written into Moxham's brokenhearted tunes. The band left us with years of stereo-side analysis, mystery, and miserable beauty with just that one record."