COMMISSARS OF CRUSH...
DESPERATELY decelerating from a speed of 100 km per hour, screeching with the sonic power of metal grinding metal, flashing by in its primal hues of blue and yellow, two hundred tonnes of forged steel, dynamo coils, formica and human flesh hits the buffer with split second timing.
This carefully controlled crush collision can mean only one thing — the train's on time.
on time, there to meet me in the echoing halts of Leeds railway station, are
the bird-of-paradise-bright Age Of
There they are in their luminous, brilliant, phosphorescent, spectacular, lurid, spectroscopic, neon, radiant, day glo, kandy coloured, electric sporto-dynamo-artificial fibro-groovo-sexo-ten speedo hip hopo-cyclo wear!!
we all know that in this, the original Gotham City, the place where bands
of highly trained spike "n' buckle
Ha ha, Mr Eldritch. And so much for your plans for ultimate world domination.
IT'S NO surprise that Age Of Chance are on time because this band are of the moment, up to the i minute, this-instant rockers -these four commissars of crush live every second of their lives and arrange every fragment of their music according to the indispensable sound doctrine. The Thoughts Of Chairman Now.
attention to the present manifests itself in the way they have adopted hip-hop's
ethic of continual evolution, of
As Neil, the motor mouth guitarist states with his customary finality, "lf you don't move, you're dead".
Of Chance can't really be accused of standing still. They nagged their way
into our lives with 'Motor City' and
radical kidnapping, torture and redesigning of 'Kiss' thrust them onto everyone's
soundscape. One more small
brazen piece of pop effervesence or a ham fisted manhandling depending on
your perspective and the ratio of
that pivotal choice of release, they've followed up with the 'Kiss' sequel,
the 'Disco Inferno' spearheaded
Now, they strike out with 'Don't Get Mad. . .Get Even' and debut album, 'One Thousand Years Of Trouble'.
discussed travel prices with drummer Jan, and penetrated the AOC endorsed
Leeds central shopping complex, we come to Miss Selfridge for affordable fashion
and the cafe where you can always get a table for interviews and
I once did a SOTW job on 'Big Bad Noise' and in the process hailed it as cheekily
piratical, while at the same time
have uncaringly aligned them with the burgeoning legions of all sampling,
all daring robbin', stealin' rhymers from
Of Chance create nothing, use everything and in the process fashion great
pop records, that is the charge. But
Geoff, the Liverpudlian bass frequencer, has two interview modes, 'bored distraction' and 'verbal onslaught'. He now selects the latter.
that takin' in order to create is a pile of shit. We sit down with guitars
or start with a drum beat and we write a
But what of the mighty sound collages that you've spoken of?
Geoff: "Yeah we do because hip hop is a general group thread. It's the only vital cutting edge to music at the moment."
"We're a hip hop band as much as we're a metal band as much as we're
a funk band. We go down to the clubs, put
for this rhymin' and stealin' thing, basically if you're going to use cuts
and scratches, they've got to work within the
"We start with the songs first and if there's anything that Powercut (Noel Watson, The Delirium and AOC's DJ) has, then he bangs it in. We don't sample much, we use a DJ. It's a much more vital way to get things across. It's facile if you do it without creative thought."
Jan: "It's very easy to use cuts that are invalid subjectively and soundwise to the rest of the track."
the resident mob orator chips in with some cafe oratory: "Sampling and
scratching are completely different things. It's like the difference between
Mantronix and, say, LL Cool J's first record. Mantronix is completely step
"If you want to be opportunist, you do what the JAMs did - you do 'All
You Need Is Love'. They ripped off our
"I just think the JAMs was a real second rate version of what we'd done eight months earlier. Basically as a record it's dull."
This is house music coming to Yorkshire and ending up a bit semi-detached.
Having said that, pop kids, it is considerably chart compatible.
Thousand Years Of Trouble' isn't an album of kissalte quality. It's got 'Big
Bad Noise' and its blasting close relative
the majority of hip hop, AOC are at their best when deployed over 45 rpm,
flaming out in a few minutes of sustained energy. What stuns in single capacity
dulls over an album, the sheer force inevitably suffering intermediate
The record company was pleasantly surprised by 'One Thousand Years Of Trouble', having battened down their ears in anticipation of a brutal noise onslaught.
a lessening of decibels, AOC do continue to organise sound outputs from US
Army helicopters to factories as
Neil: "There's nothing backward looking about us. We're always looking to the future for our inspiration in virtually every sense."
Steve: "We just feel that the industrial noise conveys a sense of us."
"The areas where we live are pretty much like inner city areas. We've
got motorways outside the front door.
never thought of noise as being purely white noise. It's always been something
more than that. It's like the
as they proclaim with one of many slogans ('Leeds, Detroit, Berlin, New York'),
AOC are attempting to create
Neil: "I admire New Order and Cabaret Voltaire for the same reason. They've managed to keep what they do together and not to come to London every week."
"It makes what you do a lot more specific, makes it more focussed. We're
not pro-Northerners but it does make a
"I know parts of Leeds very well. Walking around them gives you a special
feeling. You're not going to get that
Where will AOC pop up next? Not Leeds, Detroit, Berlin or New York but Barcelona.
"Over the last year we've moved up a league. We've graduated from the
Three A's and are now going for the