Portishead are back in our midst with a new album this year, and as if by coincidence, Massive Attack have emerged from the woodwork too.
In quick succession Robert Del Naja and co have announced a new album due for release in September, a Glastonbury Other Stage headlining slot, and now that they’ll become the first group to curate the South Bank Centre’s Meltdown festival. It’s the 15th such shindig, and runs from 14th to 22nd June.
Massive Attack haven’t been away as long as Ms Gibbons and Messrs Barrow and Utley, mind, but it’s looking like a Bristol renaissance of sorts all the same. All we need now is Tricky.
The trip-hoppers of course follow in the footsteps of Jarvis, Nick Cave, Morrissey, Patti Smith, David Bowie, Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry’, Robert Wyatt, Scott Walker and the late John Peel as curators of the event.
So who’s playing? We don’t know yet, but I reckon I can hazard a guess at three of the acts they’ll be booking already. Want a clue? Two I’m thinking of are solo female singers. One’s been around for decades and the other recently released her debut album. A third is, like Del Naja, a sometime pretty boy front man who’s getting on a bit, but still definitely has what it takes, in various guises…
Whoever gets booked, the final word has to go to Michael Lynch, the SBC’s excitable CEO: “Meltdown 2008 will be Massive!”