This funk metal crossover aggregation was formed in London during 1990, the multiracial line-up giving them their name. The band, who, predictably, were often described as the UK’s answer to Living Colour, comprised Ashton Liburd (vocals), Paul Gold (bass), Rod Quinn (b. Dublin, Eire; drums) and John McLoughlin (guitar). The group’s efforts were spearheaded by a single, ‘The Music Biz’, which featured that same legend scrawled across a pig on its cover picture. Their uncompromising live sets, meanwhile, included a cover version of Public Enemy’s ‘911 Is A Joke’, the American rap stars’ vicious attack on emergency response times in black communities, prompted by the death of a relative after having waited three hours for an ambulance. Signed to Chrysalis Records subsidiary Compulsion, they made their long-playing debut in early 1992, with a self-titled album that met with a degree of enthusiasm from the rock press. Especially notable was the agenda-setting ‘File Under Rock (Bite The Hand That Bleeds Us)’ single, which bemoaned the fact that their records were always categorized under the ‘black’ sections in stores, despite 2 Tribes being an authentic rock act - it included the line: ‘This ain’t Soul II Soul, It’s rock ‘n’ roll’. However, despite earning a Single Of The Week plaudit in the UK weekly New Musical Express, it was not enough to avert their descent into obscurity, with the band splitting soon after its release.
Share this page