After performing at the V Festival, Berlin Festival and the T in the Park Festival (where they reportedly blew away Coldplay, who were playing at a nearby stage), tomorrow Primal Scream will perform their 20-year old breakthrough album Screamadelica at Paradiso in Amsterdam. One of the slower, introverted tracks of this epic album is this week’s sunday chill track:
I recently discovered the magnificent album Screamadelica by Primal Scream. I knew Primal Scream from one track, the uplifting “Come Together“, which was featured on the first of the Trainspotting OSTs. I always loved that song, with its slow but penetrating beat, and the mix of the repetitive female vocals and the sample of the Jesse Jackson speech. But after listening to the entire Screamadelica album I realized that “Come Together” is just one great track among many on this breakthrough album of Primal Scream.
The music on Screamadelica has a timeless quality, like all great music, but at the same time it is the embodiment of a specific era. Being released in 1991 in the UK, right after the big acid house revolution, Primal Scream fused the liberating, transcendental feeling of the acid house movement, as experienced by many, with alternative rock music. The band was introduced to the scene in 1988 and after initial hesitation started to become enthusiastic ravers. They met DJ Andrew Weatherall at a rave and cooperated with him on the song “Loaded”, a cooperation which culminated in Screamadelica.
It was the right album at the right time, like Sgt. Pepper’s in 1967, God Save The Queen in 1977, or Remain in Light in 1980, and maybe even Oracular Spectacular in 2007. And mind you, Screamadelica was released one year before Underworld released their first epic blends of techno and rock. Unfortunately, Primal Scream never reached the same level of brilliance on later albums, mainly due to a bad heroin addiction developed by most of the band members. Fortunately, they have given us Screamadelica. On Documentary Heaven (a great site with 1500+ documentaries) I found a good BBC doc that celebrates this classic album: