New album from The Chemical Brothers reminded me of Warren writing about Electronic Battle Weapons:
When they start developing the sound for a new album, they release these things called Electronic Battle Weapons. These are 12-inches that they circulate to DJs containing experimental or work-in-progress pieces; the idea being that the sound can be tested on audiences and DJs both, to sonically prepare the way for the new album.
This fascinates me. The idea of freely distributing experimental pieces just to prime an audience for what may be coming next.
I don’t much like the new album – sounds like they raided too many of the old EBWs – but that’s irrelevant. It got me listening to the EBW series (they’re all on the bonus disc of Brotherhood) and thinking about trying things out again.
Each of these EBWs represents an artefact from an album, not just jams and tests. They’re not demos; they’re warnings.
Si asked me last night if I felt like upping sticks somewhere and just making things right now. And I said ‘ish’. If I went somewhere new right now I’d get there and start doing the same kind of thing I’m a bit bored of doing. And while I don’t see my life being in London for one long unbroken stretch, I’m loathe to go somewhere and take my creative ‘stuckness’ somewhere new. I’d like to arrive with a small arsenal of EBWs.