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- Posted on Jan 24th 2010 3:21PM by Stephen Dowling
Boo Hooray -- formed round the duo of Anth Brown and Tom Doyle -- started life a decade ago as Electric Music, releasing their first album, 'North London Spiritualist Church,' in 2000 on the Beastie Boys' cult label Grand Royal. All good so far -- but then Grand Royal went under just a few months after the album was released. leaving the band high and dry.
More trouble was on the way. Former Kraftwerk member Karl Bartos became incensed when the band released their debut album in Germany -- he had formed a band called Elektric Music.
"He threatened us with a lawsuit because he had a band called Elektric Music – stylishly spelled with a K – perhaps wanting to draw everybody's attention to the fact he'd been in Kraftwerk by putting a K in there," Doyle tells Spinner. "But it caused a load of problems out in Germany.I saw one piece from a magazine where, hilariously, every time they mentioned the name it had to be blacked out. It was like Reader's Wives or something."
Three years later, and the duo found a new outlet for their second album, 'The Resurrection Show,' on Sanctuary Music, under a new moniker Electric Music AKA.
Months later, they were kicked out of their studio, the punnily-titled Scabby Road, because they were unable to pay the rent. "It's one of those things -- you start running out of money, you start selling the gear. At the end of the second album we were sick of it. Not the music, but just the extraneous stuff which tends to pile up and mess with your head and make it not fun anymore."
But third time around, Doyle and Brown -- joined by Steve Aungle, Ashley Dublin and Graham Instrall -- decided to change their name again. And this time they really would be cheeky.
"We were looking for a name, and we came across this name Boo Hooray, which was a band in Dundee where we're from maybe 25 years ago. I remember them as a kid. And I know it's really bad, but it's one of these things -- we'd been accused of stealing the name Electric Music, which we hadn't stolen, and this time I wanted to make sure we'd definitely stolen it. But this band are defunct and they are aware we're doing it. We're not going to be Boo Hooray AKA."
The band's first album as the new Boo Hooray, 'Haunted,' is a dark, brooding collection, with echoes of everything from 'Lost Souls'-era Doves to the melancholic pop of Talk Talk and the wet-eyed indie soul of Elbow. It gets no better than on 'Everything is Light and Dust and Alright,' a retro-future classic with looped vocal samples and a shimmering 60s atmosphere.
"There's a bit of retro-futurism going on there, there are elements of the '60s and '70s that we really love, but we are updating them with cut-and-paste techniques. I hear a band sometimes who are trying to sound like they're from 1966, and I think that's a bit reductive. We're a technological band. It involves a lot of cut and pasting. I was a big fan of the Avalanches, especially the second album. That was something we were really trying to go for."
Gigs have been planned for March, with the now-London-based Scots supporting Americana favourites Richmond Fontaine at the Bush Hall in London on Mar. 4.
Kraftwerk's Mr Bartos may not like them, but we do. Let's hope the original Boo Hooray's lawyers do too.
'Haunted' is out on Jan. 24 through 69 Bluebird.