Closed today

By continuing your navigation on this website, you accept the use of cookies for statistical purposes.

Mother Tongue
The Message Is Love

The Message Is Love
The Message Is LoveThe Message Is Love




1x Vinyl 12" 45 RPM Reissue



Release date

Jun 1, 2022

First time (commercially available) 12" pressing of this seminal U.K. House production. Originally released in 1989. For fans of Dream 2 Science / Sha-Lor ao.

First time (commercially available) 12" pressing of this seminal U.K. House production. Originally released in 1989. For fans of Dream 2 Science / Sha-Lor ao. TIP!

"The United Kingdom has long been an ardent supporter and consumer of African-American music. Dating back to the electrifying earliest performances of blues artists like Big Bill Broonzy during the early 1950s – an influence on Eric Clapton and John Lennon – right through to the dawn of Chicago house and onwards. In fan clubs, like the Tamla Motown Appreciation Society, started by soul writer Dave Godin, to the numerous fan magazines that have documented dance music culture from Blues & Soul to Mixmag, there has been an extended obsession with black music culture.

This lineage continued into the house era, our generation’s defining dance genre, and one with which British producers were swift to adopt. This record is a prime example of this. Although Mother Tongue was a one-off project, its history is rooted in this long-standing culture stretching back decades. The main man behind Mother Tongue was a drummer and record producer named Richie Stevens. Stevens was steeped in music and the industry, thanks to his father, John Stevens, also a professional drummer. Stevens senior played in numerous jazz ensembles during the 1960s and onwards, including performing with Tubby Hayes, Ronnie Scott, Evan Parker, Derek Bailey and was a session player with John Martyn (among numerous others) during Martyn’s finest period (it’s John’s drumming you can hear on ‘Big Muff’).

His son, Richie, was playing professionally while still a teenager for the Dennis Bovell Dub Band and has subsequently backed everyone from Tina Turner and Simply Red to Hugh Masekela and George Clinton. He is also a long-term collaborator with Boy George. But the story of Mother Tongue begins with a band called Well Red. This group, effectively a studio creation by Richie and his then manager Martin Poole, recruited vocalist Lorenzo Hall, a fixture on the London reggae scene and sold the concept to Virgin Records. Well Red yielded two albums – Motion and Respect Due – but never really got the crossover success their songs perhaps deserved. “Virgin were very supportive of us,” recalls Poole, today. “They gave us a lot of money. They pumped money into it, and it never quite paid off, but we did okay. We recouped and got to make a second album with George Clinton. It was a good move, recording with him. It did us a lot of good here and in America. We did pretty well in the US. We were very well-supported over there.”

This same team, working in a tiny studio near Richie’s house in Wood Green, north London, called The Watershed, produced ‘Message Is Love’. It features the vocals of Syn-Dee (Sindy Finn) and Lovebase (Louise Porter), who co-wrote the track with Richie and Alan Lane, another Stevens collaborator, and Ian ‘Spy’ Austin, who’d previously played in the same reggae band, The Instigators, as Lorenzo Hall from Well Red. “Remember it well,” says Martin Poole. “We were just writing it there and then in the studio. It was me, Richie, Spy, and I think Syn-Dee was there as well. When I got home later, Richie played it to me over the phone and I said, ‘That just sounds brilliant,’ from how we'd started it off, you know?” Thanks to their experience in the studio with Well Red, they managed to produce a song that has the timeless feel of all good music.

Mother Tongue was the opening track on a compilation called On The Loose Volume 1 on their own Furious Fish Records. Every track on the album, despite having different artist credits, was done by Stevens and Poole, often using a rotating cast of characters that had also appeared on ‘Message Of Love’. Although it did not sell especially well at the time, it’s become a collector’s item over the years. This is the first time Mother Tongue has appeared as a 12-inch single, a long overdue (but very welcome) happening. "

Media: Mi
Sleeve: M


*Taxes included, shipping price excluded


The Message Is Love



Message Is Love (Radio Edit)


Other items you may like:

2021 repress of this classic UK house record, produced by Jaime Read.A staple in many a House DJ's bag since the 90s, the name LHAS (Larry Heard Appreciation Society) should give you serious clue on what to expect here. BIG TIP!
This urban sound is made to be "air" to you."As ignorable as it is interesting" is how Brian Eno describes Ambient music. Then how should this sound be part of our life in 2020?After works by Oh Shu & BIOMAN, Jim O'Rourke, Ana Da Silva & Phew, Tokyo based Newhere Music is now proud to present this concept album by Okada Takuro + duenn: "Urban Planning" .duenn has been working with labels from all over the world including Entr'acte (Belgium) and Past Inside The Present (US). His experimental unit 3RENSA with Merzbow and Nyantora has performed with legendary sound designer Matsuo Ohno (Astro Boy) and artist Shohei Tsuda. In recent years, duenn's work can be heard at galleries and exhibitions, including a recent collaboration with Shiho Yoshida.After Moriwaikiteiru disbanded, Okada Takuro started his solo projects with his debut album "Nostalgia". Apart from songwriting, Okada is also active as a producer and in film score.The Urban Planning album project started from a sparkle in a discussion between Okada and duenn, with "sound of the city" as a keyword. What should be ambient music in our life, in the present time?Respect of Ambient musicians and contemporary artists since the 80s, such as Yukio Fujimoto and Hiroshi Yoshimura to name a few, can be recognized in this album. However, the two artists are not trying to recreate the past masterpieces and instead, they are taking the cities of the 2020s as their raw material of inspiration. The tracks are concise and comprehensive, and the album has a precise concept with primitive melodies by duenn. duenn and Okada have clearly divided roles during the making, with duenn for the first time on melodies, and Okada on editing and producing. It is also interesting that duenn chose to use GarageBand, a tool accessible to all, for his first melody-making. For the listeners, the touch of simplicity may well remind them of the lullabies in their childhood.The artists have spent two years on this creation. Imagine the commuter trains, the cars, your room, your local park for a walk. This is the sound of the city, blent into every moment in urban life.
The last time we heard from JEX, he was cruising dance floors with his 2015 slapper "Studio E" on Running Back. Three years later, JEX returns with "Bad Timin' Vol. 1," a four-tracker made for working DJs on the newly christened Bad Timin' label. Ranging from the scorched-earth acid of "Zone Phased" to the melancholic deep of "FEE WIFI," the EP has something for everyone--well, everyone who likes hanging out at dance clubs, that is!