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Don’t Forget the Songs-365: Mach Tres: Day 021
Fri, Feb 15, 2013

“Slowly [featuring Carmen Ejogo]”
Tricky

1999
bristol1

“♫ Thrown
to my knees/
Once she
receives/ with
you I put a
dress on/ I dress
& impress on/ I
taste like
licorice/ Scream
if you’re
ticklish
♫”

After Tricky’s global success with 1995’s Maxinquaye and moving towards a more hip-hop sound with 1999’s Juxtaopose; when asked by Musician Magazine, how his gangster mentality influenced his music, trip hop mastermind Adrian “Tricky” Thaws explained, “It’s all street-wise. When I was fifteen, I used to write about shooting people and taking down girls’ pants. But then I really got into Prince, and I think all the lyrics got mixed up. I listen to Prince and I want to write something that’s beautiful and not hard-core. Some kids just listen to hip-hop or jungle or rock, but I started hearing loads of different stuff, so my lyrics changed. People like [The Specials’] Terry Hall talked about their suffering. Bob Marley and Billie Holiday—they changed my world. They’d say, “If I was your girlfriend,” and I’d think, “God, if you could say that to somebody…” Can you imagine that? What a thing to say. I wanted to write shit like that, so I think it just changed. It’s still street-wise, but it’s a different twist.”

You can definitely hear it in this rare cut that Tricky cut “Slowly” for the Ben Affleck and Sandra Bullock’s 1999 romantic dramedy, Forces of Nature. Because Nature was far from a box office hit, Tricky’s selection was largely forgotten. Since recently re-discovering this gem, realizing that “Slowly” is one of the lost jewels in Tricky’s canon of Trip Hop treasures.

Weird as fuck. I think what it is—is effort, making up for what I haven’t got. I can’t sing, so you hear me trying, and I think people connect with the effort,” is the way Tricky described his unique vocal voice. Tricky described his unique vocal style. Like Jimi Hendrix and Bob Dylan, before him Tricky has one of the most original distinctive sounding vocal voices. Once you hear his deep vox growling lusty lyrics you know that the Tricky Kid is back in the house. But if Tricky’s vocal is so strange how Thaws has a career, he explained this by boasting his voice is— “Rough. Rough. Funny enough, but girls find it sexy.” For “Slowly,” Tricky returned to his more seductive Maxinquaye like songs he recorded with former paramour Martina Topley-Bird. Carmen Ejogo fits smoothly in the role as Tricky’s alter-ego angelic chanteuse.

Tricky explained why he started veering away from his tempestuous Maxinquqye sound when he said, “You know, with the mellow stuff, it was a challenge and that’s why me and Martina work well together. She’s somewhere else I’m not, and I’m somewhere else she’s not. But we haven’t been able to give people a lot of that. People said the best tracks on Maxinquaye were when we sang together – but I don’t want to give people what they want. So straight away we stopped doing that.

But Tricky did go back with “Slowly,” his 1999 lyrical rendezvous with Carmen Ejogo; and this seductive rare track is one that needs to be unzipped, devoured and savored for all who rediscover the lusty encounters with Tricky at the mic. Let the artist formally know as Adrian Thaws take you on this song encounter, do you dare enter—can you handle stripping away your inhibitions? “Slowly” will lead you inside the undeniable sounds of Tricky’s hymn of erotic temptation.

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