The fingerprint Leftfield has left on dance music, as a whole, is undeniable. One of the best electronic music acts of all time, hands down. I’m going to tip my hand at my age here a bit, but fucking hell if their song “Not Forgotten” didn’t play a major role in me diving headfirst into all things electronic music. It’s pretty crazy to think that “Not Forgotten” came out in 1990—20 freaking years ago. 1995’s Leftism and 1999’s Rhythm and Stealth we’re equally influential to where I’m at today. Then in 2001, Leftfield broke up. That was a bummer of a year for many reasons; Leftfield calling it quits being one of them.
The band did come back in 1010 with their original vocalist Cheshire Cat, Earl 16 and Djum Djum and new singer Jess Mills and played a bunch of shows in Europe and hit Australia in 2011, but sadly there were no US dates. At least that Australian tour sparked the idea for a live album … I’m now looking forward to the release of Tourism. The release also includes a DVD of the visuals (designed by design studio ne1co) used on their Australian stage. If you’re a diehard like me, you’ll be able to download the audio aspect of the album this week, ahead of the full CD and DVD release on March 26.
Here’s what Neil Barnes had to say about the live album:
We were in enjoying ourselves in Sydney after a period of extreme flying and mental gigs when the idea of a live album was mentioned in passing. The Australian tour was such a success; it seemed like a waste not to do it. We wanted to try and capture the quality of music, the excitement we were all feeling and the enthusiasm and warmth of the Australian crowd. Its been a massive project but Tourism feels like a testament to all the hard work and enjoyable graft we have all put in over the last two years.
Following the release of the album, Leftfield will appear at London’s Brixton Academy on April 21st for an exclusive live show in support of War Child. War Child, BTW, is a great international charity that everyone should embrace. Their mission is to protect children from the brutal effects of war and the consequences from the aftermath and fallout. Considering all the BS that’s currently going down in this world—shit you barely hear about on US TV—and the fact that children have nothing to do with it, but it does affect their homes, schools, families and communities makes this show all the more special. Bummer that I’m here in LA, but for our London readers… hit it up. On the bill with Leftfield are Booka Shade (Live), Laurent Garnier, James Zabiela, M.A.N.D.Y, Jemmy and Tempo Tantrum with live visuals from Deerstalker. Now that sounds pretty damn great. It’s Leftfield’s only show of the year which really blows.
BTW, here's an interview with Neil Barnes from a few years back via BBC.
And just because here's a Leftfield gig at Montreux Jazz Festival in 2000.
Here's part 2 of the show: