All Arthur Russell obsessives will need to have a listen to this:
The Spring Collection EP is five tracks of Russell’s music reworked by a group of New York musicians called 'Arthur’s Landing’. It’s timely in the aftermath of Boiler Room's Swimming With Arthur Russell exhibition at St Marks Church, Bethnal Green earlier in 2018.
The EP’s story is fascinating for many reasons. It embraces Russell’s legacy of rich melodies; a reservoir of music which is way too deep to be forgotten. Boy’s Own’s Dave Little was commissioned to do the artwork for this EP by Steven Forest Hall, founder of Arthur's Landing.
Hall was introduced to Arthur himself by the New York poet and would-be philosopher Allen Ginsberg in East Village, NYC somewhere in the late 70s. When Russell died in ’92, Arthurs Landing continued to give life to his seminal music.
Probably Russell’s most famous composition, Love Dancing leads the EP. The 'Original' male vocal version, a massive gay anthem in its day, is this time recorded with both male and female vocals but still following the formula of the original. The instrumental backing is relaxed, with percussive elements that are calmer and more considered than the one take original from the 80s.
The second cut is an instrumental take on Your Motion Says from Arthur's Love Is Overtaking Me album. The new arrangement of Love Comes Back and List Of Boys are both completely reworked but unmistakably the creation of Arthur Russell.
Arthur’s Landing – Spring Collection is out now on Buddhist Army, buy it from Phonica here.