Video Premiere: Tribes Of Europe & Barbara Stretch – ‘The House You Built For Us’

Having previously garnered support from the likes of BBC 6Music, BBC Wales and Amazing Radio, Tribes Of Europe have returned with an energising new single to lift our spirits. The alter-ego of Fenland-based Martin Elsey, for this current project he is joined by musicians Andy Gangadeen (Massive Attack, Chase & Status, Jeff Beck) and Chris Taylor (Poison Girls), as well as the distinctive soulful vocals of jazz-punk icon Barbara Stretch.

Oozing an instantly infectious Northern Soul-infused groove and a vibrant uplifting spirit, ‘The House You Built For Us’ confronts the patriarchy with a colourful force. Propelled by the luscious, silky smooth allure of Stretch’s vocals alongside whirring keys and the sunny sway of a big band musicality, the track also features Ely Fallen Angels choir, adding a gospel-tinged euphoric energy. A perfect dose of empowering sparkling joy that we need now more than ever.

Of the track, Elsey explains:

“It seems there have always been a few men who have lusted after power and wealth, and there’s been a much larger group of men that have revered and followed them. In the process we screw the planet over and the poor get poorer, and with globalisation it’s gone into freefall. If we want to survive then society has to evolve. Men need feminism. We all need feminism. No question.”

Made in collaboration with Cambridge sound and vision artist, Jellica, watch the new, Ceefax-inspired, video to ‘The House You Built For Us’ now:

Mari Lane
@marimindles

Premiere: Tribes Of Europe & Barbara Stretch – ‘It’s A Lovely Day Tomorrow’

Following previous singles such as ‘You Don’t Speak For Me’, and acclaim from the likes of BBC 6 Music and BBC Radio 3, Fenland-based Tribes Of Europe have once again teamed up with former Feminist punk iconoclast Barbara Stretch for their latest single.

Written by Irving Berlin in 1938, ‘It’s A Lovely Day Tomorrow’ was originally intended as an anti-war song in response to the the so-called Munich Betrayal when conflict with Hitler was avoided by allowing Germany to annex the Sudetenland region of western Czechoslovakia.

Loosely based on the version released by Vera Lynn to lift spirits during the Blitz, multi-instrumentalist Martin Elsey has put his own Tribes of Europe twist on this classic track. Starting off with glitchy soundscape, the track soon morphs into an angelic ode to hope, oozing Stretch’s smooth, rich vocals alongside blues-infused twinkling hooks and sparkling festive tones. A dreamy, heartwarming accompaniment to the Christmas season. 

Of the track, Elsey explains:

What happened to the ‘lovely tomorrow’ Vera Lynn was singing about? For a while things got better – decent affordable housing, the NHS, effective vaccination campaigns, building stronger ties with Europe to help keep some peace. Then, after years of austerity, and now the Brexit fiasco, the lyric just seemed to become more and more poignant.”

Watch the new video for ‘It’s A Lovely Day Tomorrow’ now:

Mari Lane
@marimindles

Premiere: Tribes Of Europe and Barbara Stretch – ‘You Don’t Speak For Me’

Following support from BBC Radio 3’s Late Junction, Fenland-based Tribes Of Europe – the alter ego of multi-instrumentalist Martin Elsey – has now teamed up with esteemed vocalist Barbara Stretch for a poignant new offering.

Provoked by the way in which the public are increasingly lied to and misled, ‘You Don’t Speak For Me’ flows with a twinkling musicality and Stretch’s soaring, ’60s pop-reminiscent vocals. Oozing a gentle romanticism alongside its empowering message, it’s an instantly catchy and uplifting retro-futuristic creation that’ll leave you ready for action, in these times when we need it most. 

Barbara Stretch would appear to be the perfect spokesperson for delivering this socially poignant message, having been a fixture in the London punk/post-punk socio-political scene of the late ’70s and early ’80s. As part of the group Jam Today, she consciously rejected the male-dominated nature of the industry in favour of creating a totally female band infrastructure – including an all-female crew, and setting up a female focused record label, Stroppy Cow. Of the new collaboration on ‘You Don’t Speak For Me’, Barbara explains:

“I was delighted when Martin asked me to sing You Don’t Speak For Me. It’s a song which, I imagine, in our present political chaos expresses how a lot of us feel.”

Listen to ‘You Don’t Speak For Me’, for the first time, here:

 

‘You Don’t Speak For Me’ is out 21st June via Integrity Records. A limited run of CDs in hand-printed packaging will feature two additional instrumental tracks – ‘Crab Marsh’ and ‘Ysma Kego​ (​Canning Factory)’ – recorded with Cambridge found-sound artist Karsten Koehler (Second Harmonic Generation).

Mari Lane
@marimindles