Of all the band’s to ever announce a reunion, the Pop Group are possibly the last name I ever expected to see on a billing any time soon; however a reunion of sorts is what is happening.
Four dates – two in Italy and two in London – have been posted and these will be rare opportunities to Mark Stewart and his gaggle of post-punk / abstract jazz / dub / noise merchants in the flesh.
The Pop Group were quite simply one of the finest group’s to have emerged from the late-70’s punk scene. With humble beginnings in Bristol (England), the five-piece would release two mesmeric albums and three classic singles that were as uncompromising as one could possibly be without resorting to Metal Machine Music-like escapades.
Brimming with contempt for capitalist culture, their début album, Y, did not hold back and in fact their follow-up, Why Do We Tolerate this Mass Murder?, only fuelled their bitter dislike for consumerism – which makes their reforming all the more odd.
The band broke up in 1981, citing infighting amongst the group – Stewart has since worked on many shortlived collaborations and solo projects while other members of the band went on to form other acts, such as Pigbag, Maximum Joy and Rip Rig + Panic with Neneh Cherry in the early 80’s.
Stewart mentioned recently that there will be a new Pop Group album out later this year, although there has been no word of a release date as of yet.
The Pop Group will be playing the following dates:
Locamotiv Club, Bologna, Italy (September 9th)
Spazio 211 Club, Turin, Italy (September 10th)
The Garage, London, England September 11th and 12th)
For a slice of pure post-punk genius, “She is Beyond Good and Evil” should keep you all going for the weekend – and get Y; it’s a truly fabulous album. Enjoy.