Producer-vocalist Tricky has set a release date for his first full-length album with his collaboration-heavy project, Skilled Mechanics. The self-titled effort will be issued January 22nd via his own False Idols imprint.
Skilled Mechanics will feature appearances from Wild Bunch member DJ Milo, Tricky tour drummer Luke Harris, Oh Land, Ivy 艾菲, Ann Dao and more.
“It’s from a documentary about espionage,” Tricky said in a statement about the origins of the name. “There was an ex-C.I.A. agent on this program speaking about assassins who were sent abroad by the U.S. to start revolutions and topple governments. He called them ‘skilled mechanics.’ I thought that was a great name for someone who was a killer basically. The name was so dark and cynical it just stuck with me.”
The new album features two covers — “Bother,” originally by Stone Sour, and a reimagining of Porno for Pyros’ “Porpoise Head,” here retitled “Diving Away.”
Of “Bother,” Tricky said, “I imagine people will be surprised at this. But when Luke and I went into the studio, I knew he could sing, but I didn’t know what kind of voice he had. I had to know so I could write for it in the future. So I said we should cover a song he really loved. And he said that when he was really young he used to listen to this song all the time, on his headphones. So we covered it because he was obsessed by it.”
Regarding “Diving Away,” he explains, “I toured with [Porno for Pyros] in Australia in 1996. My daughter Mazy, who was about four years of age, was with us and she had frontman Perry Farrell wrapped round her little finger. He took all of us to Sealand in Australia. So there was me and Porno for Pyros all trying to get her pram onto the Australian metro. But how many big artists would do something beautiful like that? I think it speaks volumes about him. So I’ve got a lot of love for Perry Farrell and I’ve always wanted to cover one of his songs.”
Skilled Mechanics Track List
1. “I’m Not Going” (featuring Oh Land)
2. “Hero” (featuring Ann Dao)
3. “Don’t Go”
4. “Beijing To Berlin” (featuring Ivy 艾菲)
5. “Diving Away”
8. “How’s Your Life”
9. “Here My Dear”
10. “We Begin'” (featuring Francesca Belmonte)
13. “Unreal” (featuring Xdare)