Influential artist Mark Stewart releases new album “Vs”

Stewart was in the legendary band The Pop Group and has been celebrated as a vital inspiration by Nick Cave, Trent Reznor, James Murphy, Tricky, Massive Attack, St. Vincent and countless others

Influential artist Mark Stewart releases new album “Vs”

Mark describes the music on Vs as the result of, “Looking for pieces / ancient futures / orphans of the storm / memefires / predictive programming, weird science/ nu ritual, the uncanny or eerie, numerology coded / not slaves to the algorithm,” by him and his co-creators. These tracks are the output of feral experimenters exuberantly tampering with the artistic DNA of rock, hip hop, dance and funk running the gamut from “the sonic cubism of new kid on the block, Ye Gods” to the “Dub as divination” of Adrian Sherwood and ALL points in between. Of his collaborators Stewart says, “I feel a debt of honour to each comrade on this record we are ‘together in static.’”

In 1980 Stewart embarked on his solo career inspired by the sounds he had heard during a visit to New York the same year. The virtuosic scratching and early hip hop propagated by Kiss FM’s Kool DJ Red Alert, coupled with the impact of a pile driver at a construction site Stewart happened to encounter there, was enough to encourage his visionary next step. In 1982 he formed The Maffia, fashioning an abrasive confection of dub reggae, early hip hop and industrial noise that was shattering, seismic and completely ahead of its time.

Stewart has continued to plot an utterly uncompromising and individual course into the 2000s, with work bearing all the signatures of his enduring severity and modernism, teaming up with legendary collaborators and artistic descendants including Primal Scream, Keith Levene (PiL / The Clash), Richard Hell, Kenneth Anger, Daddy G (Massive Attack), Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry, The Bug, Kahn (Kahn & Neek, Young Echo) and Factory Floor.

Stewart’s canon has been celebrated as a vital inspiration by Nick Cave, Trent Reznor (Nine Inch Nails), James Murphy (LCD Soundsystem), Tricky, Massive Attack, St. Vincent and countless others. Through a staunch, unrelenting desire to confront, deconstruct and make anew, Stewart has become one of the most forward-looking luminaries of Post-Punk, or indeed, any other form of music. An artist often imitated but never bettered.

Listen and get the album at Bandcamp

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David Warren

David Warren is editor and author for Pop Expresso reach out at

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