with Sarah Jane Morris
Long Live Père Ubu!
Hearpen Records HR149
(North America) 9/14/09 cd.
Buy from Ubutique.
Long Live Père Ubu! Links
Animations by The Brothers Quay: Song Of The Grocery Police
and March Of Greed
• Press Release
• LLPU Photos & Art
• Theatrical productions: Long Live Père Ubu! - The Spectacle
and Bring Me The Head
Long Live Père Ubu! Release Notes
This album is the centerpiece of a project, two years in the works, which is an adaptation of the Absurdist stage play that gave the band its name - Alfred Jarry's "Ubu Roi" (King Ubu). The songs are the backbone of a theatrical production, "Bring Me The Head Of Ubu Roi"
, which premiered in 2008 over two days at London's prestigious Queen Elizabeth Hall. A Radio Play was recorded as an audio storyboard for a proposed film by The Brothers Quay
, who created animations for the theatrical production.
"Ubu Roi" premiered in Paris in 1896 provoking riots in the theatre and a national scandal. It was banned after only two performances. The story was a re-telling of Shakespeare's "Macbeth" and is a vicious satire of the bloated and corrupt state of pre-World War I Europe.
"Brutal, lacking charm, and without redeeming values, this is an album for our times," Pere Ubu founder David Thomas says. "It is, in fact, the only punk record that's been made in the last 30 years."
"Long Live Père Ubu!" is not background music. It's not "fun" music. It's an intellectual and conceptual challenge and as viciously satirical as Jarry's original. "If you're not going to listen to this with the same effort you'd devote to a literary novel, you're wasting your time," Thomas says. "It's long past time for rock music to grow up and move past the simpering platitudes or Tom Joad cant that passes for serious thought. All hail the survival of the Unfit!"
Every moment of the sound has been carefully crafted as a narrative voice in its own right according to Thomas' hyper-naturalistic™ recording methods. For more than a decade, working in partnership with engineer Paul Hamann, Thomas has accumulated an array of "junk-o-phones" to replace studio microphones. These include speakers salvaged from broken devices, wooden boxes, metal horns, panes of glass, even doors, wired into specialized electronics, likewise salvaged from castaways.
David Thomas, of course, is the voice of Père Ubu. Sarah Jane Morris (Communards, Happy End) was recruited to sing the role of Mère Ubu. Pere Ubu's soundman, Gagarin, an ambient electronica recording artist in his own right, guests on the album and joins the band on stage. The rest of the band, unchanged from the last studio album, Why I Hate Women, sing other roles. They are Keith Molinè on guitar; Robert Wheeler on EML synthesizer, theremin; Michele Temple on bass; and Steve Mehlman on drums.
Long Live Père Ubu! Production Notes
Produced by David Thomas.
Engineered by Paul Hamann.
Recorded and mixed at Suma, Painesville OH, at various times between January and September 2008.
Portions recorded elsewhere by David Thomas, Dids and Michele Temple.
Music for "The Story So Far" recorded at Harvest Moon, Milan OH.
Front cover photo of Mère and Père Ubu by Angell.
Live photos by Mark Mawston.
Package design by John Thompson, www.idrome.net
Ubu Overture written by Molinè. Song Of The Grocery Police, Banquet Of The Butchers, March Of Greed, Less Said The Better, Big Sombrero (Love Theme) and Bring Me The Head written by Thomas, arrangements by Mehlman - Molinè; - Temple - Thomas - Wheeler. Road To Reason, Slowly I Turn, Watching The Pigeons and The Story So Far written by Mehlman -Molinè - Temple - Thomas - Wheeler. Snowy Livonia written by Mehlman - Temple. Elsinore & Beyond written by Gagarin - Molinè; - Thomas.
All songs ©2009 Ubu Projex, administered by Cooking Vinyl Music in the ROW. All songs ©2009 Ubu Projex, administered by Bug Music in North America.
Pere Ubu Instrumentation:
David Thomas - "Père Ubu," xiosynth, organ, bass
Sarah Jane Morris - "Mère Ubu"
Keith Molinè - guitar, vocals
Robert Wheeler - EML synthesizer, theremin, vocals
Gagarin - electronica
Michele Temple - bass, vocals, other instruments
Steve Mehlman - drums, vocals, belching galore, percussion
Long Live Père Ubu! Release History
- Cooking Vinyl COOKCD497
(World, except North America) 9/14/09 cd.