Chumbawamba

2009-03-16

I used to listen to the Chumbas lots. They bestrode the 80’s and the 90’s particularly as a live band; they were constants on the festival scene. They consistently produced wonderful pop records, danceable and wonderful, underpinned with an anarcist heart and strong political message which always seemed at a counterpoint to their lightness of their sound.

Unfortunately, I was really busy in the 90’s and never saw them live, which was a pity; so I was a bit surprised when they turned up in the SAGE programme; why not, I thought.

Turns out, in the mean time, they have transmogrified into a 4-piece acoustic folk band; the harmony and lyricism of “homophobia” has ceased to be a standout and become their mainstay. As in the past, they retain their ear for catchy tunes, a strong sense of humour and lots of politics thrown in. The acoustic band seems here to stay; an 8 member electric bank is just too expensive in this day and age.

I’m kind of sad to have missed them in the first incarnation; but I’m really glad to have seem them in their second. They were wonderful and I enjoyed every minute, even if I could have done with a bit of dancing.