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Thursday, October 19, 2006

Kula Shaker - Blender blendha


KLS001are an English psychedelic rock band who came to prominence during the Britpop era. They split during 1999 but have now reformed without Jay Darlington and are touring and planning to write a new album during 2006. In September 1995 Kula Shaker were joint winners of the "In The City" contest (along with Placebo), which quickly resulted in a record contract with Columbia Records, who were eager to sign another band that had the multi-platinum, crossover appeal of Oasis. A debut single, 'Tattva (Lucky 13 Mix)' (later re-recorded for their debut album) was released on CD and limited 7" vinyl in March 1996, but it entered just outside the Top 75, at number 86. "Tattva" was followed quickly in April by the band's second single, "Grateful When You're Dead", a slice of Acid Hendrix-esque rock which was to became their debut UK Top 40 single (entering at #35). Music press and public alike finally began to take notice of the band, and this sudden exposure propelled the re-released (and re-recorded) "Tattva" to number 4 in the UK charts. The band's upward climb continued with their third single "Hey Dude", a more traditional rock song which was only kept off the top spot by the Spice Girls when it was released in August.

October saw the release of the band's eagerly awaited debut album K, which became the fastest selling debut since Oasis' Definitely Maybe. The album went on toks002 sell over 850,000 copies in the UK, a further 250,000 copies in the US, and well over a million copies worldwide. The fourth and final single from K was "Govinda", which reached number 7 in the UK charts in December of that year. "Govinda" was sung totally in Sanskrit, and mixed swirling guitars with traditional Indian music. Total sales for all the singles from K came to half a million.

1997 got off to a fine start for the band with four nominations for Brit awards, and they subsequently took home the award for "British Breakthrough Act" at the ceremony in February. In the same month they released what would turn out to be their biggest hit, a cover of Deep Purple's version of "Hush" ( originally by Joe South ) , which peaked at number 2. The song also proved successful in the US, where it was used on the soundtrack to the blockbuster movie "I Know What You Did Last Summer". The song was also placed at number 224 by Virgin Radio, in a poll for the 20th century's greatest songs. In the wake of the single's release, some ill-advised remarks on the traditional mystical properties of Swastikas by Crispian Mills put the band in the firing line of some of the UK press (see "Controversy" below).

ks004Despite the negative publicity, the band pressed on regardless with a set of live shows in the summer of that year, most notably being acclaimed by many as the best live act T in the Park had ever seen. This was in addition to headlining the Glastonbury Festival, and performing at the V music festival in England. The focus during the latter part of 1997 moved to the US where both "Tattva" and "Hey Dude" received airplay exposure. "Tattva" became a minor number 10 hit in the Modern Rock Tracks Chart and "Hey Dude" peaked at number 25. K itself peaked at number 11 in the Heatseekers chart and K crept into number 200 in the Billboard charts. An EP, Summer Sun, was released in the US for the band's fans there. The 6 tracks on the EP were all B-sides to earlier UK singles.

Kula Shaker - Live At Aston Villa Leisure Center, Birmingham 27-01-97

  1. Baby You're a Rich Manblendhafront
  2. Knight on the Town
  3. 303
  4. Grateful When You're Dead
  5. Jerry Was There
  6. Ragi One
  7. For This Love
  8. Drop in the Sea
  9. Tattva
  10. Smart Dogs
  11. Start All Overblendhaback]
  12. Hey Dude
  13. Hush
  14. Hollow Man
  15. Into the Deep
  16. Govinda

16 tracks / mp3 / from silver CD KTS


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