Shooting The Messenger
FORMAT: CD and download album
TITLE: Shooting The Messenger
ARTISTS: Nick Toczek & Signia Alpha
LABEL: Mutiny 2000 Records
DOWNLOAD RELEASE DATE: 1 Jan 2019
CD RELEASE DATE: 14 Jan 2019
This first single, The Voices In His Head, is an edited version of the opening track on Shooting The Messenger, the forthcoming debut album by performer-poet Nick Toczek and Signia Alpha, the musical pseudonym of multi-instrumentalist/producer Matt Webster, featuring guest musicians. The album, to be available both on download and as a physical CD, is due out at one second past midnight on 01/01/2020, making it the first release of the new decade.
From Bob Dylan to Ian Dury, Woody Guthrie to Patti Smith, Jack Kerouac to Linton Kwesi Johnston, Lou Reed to John Cooper Clarke, and David Bowie to Eminem and other rappers, spoken word set to music has an honoured past. The current revival in this form has been exemplified by the most recent work of Nick Cave, Kate Tempest and countless Grime artists.
Using a subtly refined blend of funky jazz and atmospheric grooves, Nick Toczek & Signia Alpha have created a truly innovative album for which this single, with its theme of mental health, provides a provocative taster.
What they said about The Bavariations Album (a joint project with German songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. Thies Marsen). This was Nick’s previous album, released just six months ago in July 2019:
‘Toczek is a multi-talented poet, journalist and author… Thies Marsen is an equally talented Bavarian musician… Toczek mixes his metres up in a generally measured manner, all the while delivered in a distinctive but disarmingly calm Yorkshire accent… given an extra urgency or melancholy (by) Marsen’s musical arrangements. Bavariations is not so much ranting verse then as a collection of world-weary deliberations and passionate vituperations set to music.’
Rich Deakin in Vive Le Rock!
‘Setting poems against music is hazardous. It takes a good poet and a sensitive arranger to make it work. Nick Toczek is, thankfully, the kind of poet whose lifestyle and experience aptly suit him to the process. You might say he’s cool… His counterpart is, suitably, a Bavarian punk and indie musician who… has finally produced this stunning, innovative album where highly politicised or often metaphysical pieces make their way like falling dominoes in a mesmerising cascade.’
Nick Burbridge in RnR Magazine