Letter from 'Young Dude' Dale Griffin post-Peel Session

We were planning to post this letter from ex-Mott The Hoople drummer and producer of many John Peel Sessions, Dale Griffin, sent to us just a few days after he worked on our Peel Session.

Then, after hearing the sad news on Monday about his death on Sunday prompted us to share this very supportive and downright lovely missive from Mr Griffin sooner rather than later:

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Ian did get his valve amp (a Roland Bolt) a few years later and we certainly made more use of Paula's vocals. Shame she didn't stick around, but that's a whole other story...

We were surprised that 6 Music didn't give Mr Griffin more coverage as they constantly broadcast many archive Peel sessions, and Dale surely had a hand in a huge number of them.

Here's a Dale story posted on our Facebook earlier in the week by Ian:

"I'll always remember Ali (our drummer) telling Dale he wanted to get a tribal sound from his (not particularly impressive) drumkit to which he quipped "You'll only get a pygmy tribe sound out of that!". He ate his words later when Ali managed to get an extremely dynamic/widescreen sound from his 'toy' kit!"

Thanks for the music Dale! And for being such a dude during our stint at the famous Maida Vale Studios...

From the Khartomb Archives: Zigzag interview January 1984

A few months after Melody Maker and Zigzag journalist, Mick Mercer, posted a very upbeat review of "Teekon Warriors" in Zigzag, he interviewed us for a 1-page article in the same mag.

As mentioned in the previous post the article was a real oddity. He made some slightly snarky remarks about us i.e. "The Famous Five grown up" and then didn't reveal our names, apart from Caroline's, until the end of the article. 

After his glowing appraisal a few months previously, the throwaway style of the article and the sniffy tone didn't give a great impression of Khartomb 1984.

But then the final short paragraph "Infinite possibilities" is much more like it. Just wish Mr Mercer had elaborated on that phrase more constructively in the rest of the feature.

See what you think.

Download a copy of the interview here

From the Khartomb Archives: Zigzag review November 1983

Last week Ian Khartomb was trawling through all the old papers he's managed to keep from the early Khartomb days. 

He even found the map that Caroline drew to help him find her home for their first rehearsal (this was way, way before satnav and Google Maps!) back in 1980.

But he also found some real gems which we'll post on the website and let you know about via social media over the next few weeks.

For the first post here's a very positive review of "Teekon Warriors" (not "Swahili Lullaby", the labels were incorrectly affixed on the first pressing) by Melody Maker and Zigzag journalist, Mick Mercer.

Mick went on to interview us in 1984 and wrote this very odd piece which really didn't paint Khartomb in the best light and from a recent reread was stylistically very strange too. We'll post it soon!

Older readers will remember the Melody Maker as a weekly inky (very inky) music paper and Zigzag was a rather fine monthly rock magazine, one of the first to start covering the burgeoning punk scene which started, can you believe, about 40 years ago. Time flies etc.

Have you heard 'Is It Safe'?

At our last rehearsal weekend in Lincolnshire Caroline and Ian recorded an acoustic version of a brand new track 'Is It Safe' (and the film buffs amongst you may have noticed the 'Marathon Man' reference). 

It's very stripped down with Caroline on vocals and Ian strumming his flamenco guitar and we posted it on our SoundCloud just a few weeks ago. 

Hope you enjoy it...

Shut It Down/Cabbages & Kings EP out on 4 May

It's the news they've been waiting for... a new official release by Khartomb is out on Monday 4 May (and hopefully we don't drown under all the Star Wars posts and publicity!).

Our two new tracks "Shut It Down" and "Cabbages & Kings" will be available on iTunes, Google Play, Amazon etc in the original studio mix, with remixes by Michael from 1,000 Mexicans and two completely out there dub/electronica remixes by Mistrust.

We're still planning live shows later in the year to promote these new tracks and our expanding repertoire of new and older, reworked material.

Listen to 'Hand Grenade' & 'The Book'

Brand new Living Room demos have just been posted in the Music section.

Both tracks were recorded at our most recent weekend recording/rehearsal session in sunny/windy/rainy Lincs (Ian maintains there's always extreme weather whenever he treks up and down the A16).

We hope you enjoy the melodic 'Book' and grunge-y 'Hand Grenade', both fine additions (we reckon) to the New Khartomb body of work, which has grown over the last 18 months or so to deluxe album like proportions.

No deluxe album on the horizon, but our first release for a long time is due out in April. Watch this space/website for more details.