Mandrillifesto [Youth Destroyer Dub Remix]
WRITTEN BY JOSH RAY – MARCH 2017
Cometh the moment, cometh the remix… The Mandrill marches on with a brand new take on the Mandillifesto courtesy of Martin Glover AKA Youth, who’s offered up a colossal, apocalyptic Dub Destroyer Remix.
Starting out in the punk scene, adopting the name ‘Pig Youth’ after Jamaican deejay Big Youth, Glover blagged his way into playing bass guitar in the band The Rage and found himself warming up for The Adverts and The Saints on a 32 date UK tour in 1977, which led to a 2-week, 10-night residency at Eric’s, where they supported the Stranglers and the Pretenders and partied with Jayne Casey, who was in Big In Japan at the time.
In 1979 he co-wrote and co-produced ‘One Of The Lads‘ with Jimmy Lydon – Johnny Rotten’s brother – and his band, 4″ Be 2″ but it was his work that began with another band that year that he is best remembered for. Responding to an ad in Melody Maker, he joined the newly formed Killing Joke on bass, releasing their ‘Turn To Red‘ EP in the autumn of 1979 and following up the next year with their self-titled debut LP.
Their ruthless and raw style straddled the line between punk and heavy metal, with dub added in for good measure. The band enjoyed a great deal of success in the early ’80s and toured extensively during that period, their notoriety growing due to their provocative record sleeves, which often caused controversy. Alan Moore was a big fan of their work, to the extent that he named his one-shot Batman comic after the band.
Internal conflicts led to Youth leaving Killing Joke in 1982 and releasing ‘That’s What Good Friends Are For…’ under the pseudonym Brilliant, an angry track calling out his former bandmates and playing on the title of their second album, ‘What’s THIS for…!’
Youth’s Brilliant project lasted 4 years and the band went through about 30 members during that period but by the time Bill Drummond – formerly of Big In Japan – signed them to WEA it had been whittled down to Jimmy Cauty, Youth and June Montana. In a strange turn of events Drummond was drawn into the orbit of caustic pop producer Pete Waterman, who asked Drummond if he had a band who needed a hit, and Drummond put forward Brilliant.
Upon hearing the band Waterman told Drummond to sack everyone apart from vocalist, June Montana, and Brilliant were taken at the helm by his production trio, Stock, Aitken and Waterman. Waterman misguidedly thought they could adopt James Brown’s misogynistic ‘It’s A Man’s Man’s World’ into a feminist anthem, which fell flat. They released an album and three other singles and all of them flopped.
Although he never produced the hits he had promised, Waterman was able to set up his own studio with the money from the WEA deal and he soon stepped into his infamous role as an opportunistic producer/puppeteer, taking Kylie and Jason from an Australian soap and turning them into malleable pop stars and severely polluting the music industry as a result – laying the foundations for hollow TV talent shows.
At the same time as that, Bill Drummond and Jimmy Cauty would never have formed The KLF had it not been for their time spent working together in Brilliant, and the grounding in how to make a pop hit they got from the machiavellian Pete Waterman – Youth no doubt learned a thing or two from him too.
Following Brilliant, Cauty also formed The Orb with Youth’s old school-friend and Killing Joke roadie, Alex Patterson, creating the ambient house genre in the process. Having formed the dub/industrial label WAU! Mr. Modo alongside Patterson in 1989, Youth would end up working with The Orb after Cauty left the group, co-writing 1990’s ‘Little Fluffy Clouds‘ . His stint with the group was short-lived however, as he had other studio work taking up his time.
Youth has been prolific in the studio over the years, lending his bass guitar, production and remixing skills to Art Of Noise, Kate Bush, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Yazoo, Paul McCartney, Pink Floyd, James, The Charlatans, Primal Scream, The Verve, Malcolm McLaren, Stereo MC’s, A Guy Called Gerald and The Jesus and Mary Chain to name a few.
Black Grape headed over to Youth’s studio in Spain last year and came back with a new album they’d created in a matter of days. What they came back with was a really accomplished sound, and that creative environment brought out the best in them lyrically too. This efficient style of working really resonated with Kermit Leveridge and he applied it to the ‘Alan Moore Meets Super Weird Substance At The Arts Lab Apocalypse‘ earlier this year. Kermit had been looking to bounce more creative ideas off Youth since he got back from Spain too.
We’re pleased to announce that Youth will be joining us at our 14 Hour Super Weird Happening at The Florrie in Liverpool on April Fools Day.
OBEY THE MANDRILL!
LEAD IMAGE BY YOUTH