Electronic musicians L’Rain, TV On The Radio‘s Kyp Malone, Empress Of, Honey Dijon, Nguzunguzu, MikeQ and Ian Isiah are featured on the newly released compilation, Bring Down The Walls, covering classic house anthems with formerly incarcerated vocalists. The opening number and title track of the new compilation is an historic reunion of Larry Heard and Robert Owens, the pair behind the original 1986 single. Elsewhere on Bring Down The Walls, producers and musicians offer up their own signature take on some of the best house songs ever made.
The Bring Down The Walls compilation is just one aspect of Phil Collins‘ massive public art project that uses house music and nightlife to take a political stance against the prison industrial complex. Proceeds from this compilation will go to the New York Chapter of Critical Resistance, a grassroots organization that “works to build healthy, self-determined communities and promote alternatives to the current system”.
Read a statement from Phil Collins about the project:
“House culture has, to me, always been a mode of resistance, opening up new understandings of community and solidarity. Its radical proposition of simply being together offers another way of engaging the conversation around the prison industrial complex, which sentences discriminately and disproportionately, but impacts us all. Even after their release, people remain confined and punished by invisible barriers – physical, emotional, economic. The very real human cost of systemic regressive policies comes sharply into focus through sharing time and space, and in direct exchange with one another. At a time when top-down politics of division devastates people’s lives and communities, it feels right to revisit the sense of yearning, loss, desperation, unity, and defiance which have always been crucial aspects of house culture, and to connect to the histories of institutional violence and indifference over the last thirty years.”
Listen to Bring Down The Walls below. Pay what you want for the digital album and pre-order the double vinyl LP via Bandcamp.
Tracks we love: “You’re Gonna Miss Me”, “Break For Love”, “That’s The Way Love Is”, “Your Love”