Super Group Freebass Break Up

posted September 17, 2010

Super Group Freebass Break Up

Manchester's all-star bassist super group Freebass, consisting of New Order's Peter Hook, The Stone Roses' Mani Mounfield and The Smiths' Andy Rourke, only weeks before the release of their LP, have stated that they are no longer set to continue as a band. Freebass' debut album, "It's A Beautiful Life," is scheduled to be released in Europe September 20th by Essential and worldwide December 7th by American indie label 24 Hour Service Station. The band's debut EP, "Two Worlds Collide," released only a month ago through a partnership with Hook's new label Hacienda Records and 24 Hour Service Station, features vocals from The Charlatans UK singer Tim Burgess, Pete Wylie, Howard Marks & Hook.

The official statement issued by Freebass on September 9th reads, "Recent events have made Freebass entirely unviable as a band, and with this in mind, it has been decided that the project should be shelved, rather than placed on hiatus while members pursue their other interests. The band would like to take the opportunity to thank friends and fans for their support and interest, especially on the UK tour in June 2010. We also hope that people will enjoy the album, which concludes five years of work and treat it on its own merits. No third parties were involved or harmed in the break up."

Previously, a series of outbursts by Mounfield on the website Twitter accused 54-year-old Hook of exploiting the memory of the late Ian Curtis, his former bandmate in Joy Division. Hook told Yorkshire Evening Post he'd been unable to contact Mounfield but suspected "the problem was connected to a number of offers he had received to perform the Joy Division album 'Unknown Pleasures' in its entirety. "It's interesting to get this criticism from Mani when he's doing (a live revival of the 1991 Primal Scream album) 'Screamadelica' himself," he said. "I'm very proud of the Freebass album. Playing Unknown Pleasures I'm very proud of. I've got nothing to complain about."

On September 13th, Mounfield released a statement of apology.

"I wish to apologise unreservedly to Peter Hook and his family regarding comments made on a social networking site which was totally out of character for me. It was a venomous, spiteful reaction to a lot of things that are going on in my life right now and I chose to vent my frustrations and anger at one of my true friends in this filthy business, and ventured into territory which was none of my concern. The Freebass thing has tipped me over the edge and became the focus of my bilious rants. Twenty two years of being tripped up, face down in the mud and being kicked in the face with an iron boot will do that to the most stable of men. I hope I haven't blown a great friendship forever. Sorry Pete. In a funny way, my outburst might make people want to check the record out. I'm proud of what we achieved really. It's not often bass players get to step out of the shadows and create something from scratch, and between us we've managed it. A bumpy ride but we got there.....give it a listen. I hope I'm not turning into a bitter and twisted old rocker, that's not what I'm about as anybody who knows the real me will be happy to confirm."

Hook subsequently responded, "Mani is a great friend of mine and he always will be. I have the utmost respect for him as a person and musician. Have none of you ever fallen out with somebody you love?"