After revealing details of his new album ununiform, Tricky has shared the video for his new single “When We Die” which features Martina Topley-Bird and was released earlier this month. The track receives a melancholy yet beautiful visual accompaniment, directed and produced by Jenny Marie Baldoz.
ununiform is described as an intricate album – a journey into happiness and contentment. It’s a record that shows the legendary British producer confront his legacy, history, family – even death itself. And in all of this, he finds the strangest, least familiar thing – peace. ununiform was conceived in Moscow and completed in Berlin, where Tricky has been living for the past three years – not lavishly, but instead leading a clean, reflective and positive life: “I don’t know anybody. I eat good food. I go for walks”.
Testament to Tricky’s dynamism, ununiform sees him further work with new, up-and-coming singers as well as collaborators of the past. “When We Die” features Martina Topley-Bird, who first made an appearance on Tricky’s debut 1995 album, Maxinquaye – released a month before the pair’s daughter was born. They haven’t collaborated on one another’s output in almost fifteen years.
Eerie, haunting yet enveloped by a sense of peace and acceptance, “When We Die” sees Tricky take hold of a new zest for life he has come to possess: “If you don’t accept death you don’t really accept life” says Tricky.
ununiform also sees Tricky rekindle a working relationship with Francesca Belmonte on “New Stole” and flip expectations with a cover of Hole’s 1994 single “Doll Parts” performed by another bright emerging talent, Avalon Lurks. Terra Lopez (of Rituals of Mine) makes an appearance on “Armor” – a collaboration following Rituals of Mine supporting Tricky on shows in California last year. Album highlight “Running Wild” features vocals from a young Londoner called Mina Rose, who is featured on two tracks of the album and will also be joining Tricky’s touring party this year.
Interestingly, the effect of his new-found outlook, freedom and lifestyle has led to Tricky turning back to his classic sound – perhaps the final frontier for such an inveterate experimentalist. “I’ve got nothing to prove now, and I’m comfortable with referencing myself.” Indeed, he’s since described last month’s single “The Only Way” as “Hell is Round The Corner, Part 2”. This sensation is perhaps a response to a wave of artists referencing Tricky’s ’90s records and his approach, from The xx to boundary-pushing London rappers Gaika and CASisDEAD, the latter of which Tricky recently collaborated with. “I’ve got a really wide audience. So I’ve got nothing to prove. I feel like sometimes it’s OK to do it again.”
The first album that Tricky has compiled as a truly independent artist free from the pressure of debt and destruction, ununiform is a glorious, beautiful and intensely personal attempt to answer the simple question “What does Tricky sound like?”
1. Obia Intro
2. Same As It Ever Was (feat. Scriptonite)
3. New Stole (feat. Francesca Belmonte)
4. Wait For Signal (feat. Asia Argento)
5. It’s Your Day (feat. Scriptonite)
6. Blood Of My Blood (feat. Scriptonite)
7. Dark Days (feat. Mina Rose)
8. The Only Way
9. Armor (feat. Terra Lopez)
10. Doll (feat. Avalon Lurks)
11. Bang Boogie (feat. Smoky Mo)
12. Running Wild (feat. Mina Rose)
13. When We Die (feat. Martina Topley-Bird)