Monday, January 10, 2011

Freebass: A Family Tree

Freebass, the super-group formed by Manchester bass legends Peter Hook (Joy Division/New Order/Revenge/Monaco), Gary "Mani" Mounfield (The Stone Roses/Primal Scream) and Andy Rourke (The Smiths), imploded shortly after the release of their debut album a few months ago.  Curious to see who else was involved a bit research reveals a closely connected group.

The keystone of the project was Peter Hook, their biggest voice in the press as he talked up the group over the past five years, and the membership of the group reflects this.  Hooky considered the similarly indie and Manchester-based The Smiths as New Order's "competition"  and he produced The Stone Roses early single "Elephant Stone".  Freebass keyboardist and programmer Phil Murphy also works with Hooky in the dance project Man Ray and drummer Paul Kehoe was a part of Monaco's live line-up.  Singer Gary Briggs connection to the band stems from Andy Rourke.  Joe Moss, former manager of The Smiths, discovered Briggs first band Haven who had an album produced by Rourke's former band mate Johnny Marr.  It may be a small world, but Manchester stands united.

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