| Sound

Into the Unknown: tUnE-yArDs – Bizness

This is what happens when you're blindsided by a song so great it should be hugely popular?

I was not quite sure which way to go this month.

Tune yards bizness indie afrobeatI thought that by the time this went online this tune would be huge, adorning an advert for a small computer or a stripy pair of trainers, either way I was sure it would have been used and I said to myself if it did I’d leave it and concentrate on something less obvious, a song with no exposure that needed all the little help it could get. For whatever reason Bizness by tUnE-yArDs so you're in for something new and great!

this song is not solely about the chorus, it is about the whole, exploding package .

Bizness is not everywhere, not soiling my TV with poorly matched visuals and not sickening me with its relentless presence. It remains, in the most, pretty obscure and that’s one good reason to write about it. Another reason is that it happens to be an incredible piece of music that needs to be heard.
 
Every so often you latch on to a track that is enjoyed by one and all, the track you reserve in the memory bank for pissed up song wars at summer barbeques. This is it.

You’ll be hard pushed to find someone that does not like it. It begins with a strangely enjoyable shrill introduction opening the door to the vocal layers to come. They run through the song like a snake escaping from a sack of corn, they ebb and flow yet don’t repeat, don’t bore and certainly keep you interested; from dubby words and subtle charms to full on harmonic backing vocals, it’s a master class in singing.

tune yards bizness afrobeat indie

Merrill Garbuss’s voice is one you will not forget in a hurry. It’s a surprising, androgynous mix that is hard to put a lock on. The Chorus is a triumph, with its rush of words crammed over a crush of catchiness: “Don’t take my life away, don’t take my life away” bears repeated listens. Yet despite its wonderful contribution this song is not solely about the chorus, it is about the whole, exploding package .

Bizness has an insistent Afrobeat influence, the plucky guitar and off-kilter, M.I.A type drums in particular, with the production not far – but also very far – from TV on the Radio. Again, it comes back to those layers – it is all about those layers. Layering like this can be attributed to not just Afrobeat but also decent Techno.  Elements freely drop in bar by bar; from the brrr brrr bass to the tappy percussion before ascending into a rousing horn section; which arriving first in a recognisable manner returns wonderfully mutated, eluding to synthetic steel drums and forces the now captive listener forwards to a majestic peak.

Every so often you latch on to a track that is enjoyed by one and all, the track you reserve in the memory bank for pissed up song wars at summer barbeques. This is it. 

Bizness’s accompanying video is an eccentric revelation, a visual pleasure that lends much to the track’s oddball humanity. Contorting faces and displaced dancing marry well with all the shiny goodness a video for this fascinating song is expected to contain. If it is your first exposure, then the full monty is highly recommended -I suggest both as big and as loud as you can.
I would like to thank a certain Jon Hillock and his New Noise Podcast for putting me on to this song. Hillcock is an unsung hero of radio that I cannot believe isn’t on the radio more regularly. Maybe it’s time for a few of the very good and well respected guys, particularly within the BBC to step aside; after all you cannot replicate fresh talent.

tUnE-yArDs will play Scala, London on 8th June.

Liam runs the small but potentially revolutionary radio station Different Class Radio, he just needs that one idea.

Comments are closed.

Our weekly newsletter

Sign up to get updates on articles, interviews and events.

Join Trebuchet on PatreonExclusive content and full media memberships available

This is the patreon page for Trebuchet podcast and website. We publish a beautiful printed magazine biannually and release an irregular podcast on contemporary art every month (or so). 

Our website is updated every other day with new art news, art criticism and much more. Become a backer and join us in discovering new forms of art that raise the heart rate and electrify the mind.  

Cookies and GDPR

By visiting this site you agree that you're fine with us using cookies. (read cookie policy)