Massive Attack


Composed by Robert del Naja / Grantley Marshall / Massive Attack / Andrew Vowles

Song Review by

Fraught by doubt and paranoia, Massive Attack struggled to lay down the tracks for their third album as 3D spent hours in the studio "making tracks, tearing them apart, f***ing them up, panicking, then starting again." Such drama ultimately delayed the album's projected December 1997 release by nine months; the gap was plugged by "Risingson," a new single unleashed in July 1997. The song became a monstrous tease, appearing almost a full year before the album's eventual release. It gave an eager audience a hint of what was to come -- although the brooding aura was slightly deflected by the use of a sample from the Velvet Underground's "I Found a Reason." Featuring trademark beats and vocals, the song's lyrics were shot through with danger, in a seemingly scathing commentary of the club scene that had embraced Massive Attack. "Now you're lost and you're lethal" felt like a warning. Further enhanced by the softest gasps and sighs buried deep within the mix, and guitars that sliced through the whole thing, "Risingson" was a monumental vibration, a shift in consciousness for the band. The Singles 90/98 box set featured several remixes of the song, including an interesting turn by Underworld.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Risingson 1997 Virgin
Club Hits '97 [Time Unlimited] 1997
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution 5:53
Bside Altrisuoni Da Radiodeejay 1997
Various Artists
Virgin 4:57
Mezzanine 1998 Virgin 4:58
Singles 90/98 1998 Circa 8:39
No Image 1999
50,000,000 DJs Can't Be Wrong, Vol. 1: Mixed up Beats 2001
Various Artists
Redline Records 5:03
Blue Lines/Protection/Mezzanine 2002 Virgin / Wild Bunch 4:58
Abre los Ojos 2004
Original Soundtrack
EMI Music Distribution
Collected 2006 Virgin 4:57
Later...the First 15 Years 2008
Various Artists
Rhino / Warner Music 4:08
No Image EMI / EMI Music Distribution 8:39