Release Date: Jul 7, 2017
Record label: MCA
Having recently seen Ride, Slowdive and The Jesus And Mary Chain reappear with unexpected new albums after significant absences, perhaps the biggest surprise of all has been the re-emergence of Salford's Black Grape. Against all odds following court battles (Shaun Ryder) and heart complications (Kermit), the two mainstays from the band reconnected to pursue new ideas, and after a suggestion by Alan McGee, ex-Killing Joke bassist Martin Glover (Youth) came in on production for third album Pop Voodoo. Ryder couldn't contain his delight at having Youth on board, calling him a "hit-maker" – fully justified considering his success with The Verve and Embrace plus numerous other more recent outings.
Like unruly gatecrashers, Black Grape spiced up the Britpop party by gleefully trampling over polite sensibilities. Twenty years on, and with Shaun Ryder fully rehabilitated as a cuddly reality TV star, their return finds them revisiting former glories. Uber-producer Youth adds a sleaze-funk swagger to a valedictory Nine Lives, while standouts Losing Sleep and Money Burns could almost be outtakes from the Mondays' commercial peak Pills 'n' Thrills And Bellyaches.