So what's up with the name of the album you ask? A tribute to an area of London that became a byword for creativity and cultural diversity, you can walk across the Liberty of Norton Folgate in a few minutes. For centuries, Norton Folgate, just north of the City, was a Liberty - free from the rules that governed most of London. Here lived actors, musicians, artists, writers, thinkers, louts, low-lifes and libertines - outsiders and troublemakers all. Now, in danger of vanishing beneath corporate steel, glass and concrete, the area's last old Victorian power station, an important historic survival saved from dereliction is threatened with demolition. The Light stands in the way of a planned 50-story skyscraper, part of a 650,000sq ft development of offices and shops. A petition to save it has been signed by more than 5,000 people. Across the road, even more high-rise office buildings are planned. Another is just being completed.
Now about the music. Here is a live video of the band's performance of the title track from the Hackney Empire show on 6/26/08
The Hackney shows featured jugglers, ukelele playing chimney sweeps, pearly Kings and Queens, and had a full orchestra. Split into 3 acts, Madness performed the major part of forthcoming album 'The Liberty Of Norton Folgate', topped off with a 40 minute classic singles set including 'Baggy Trousers', 'Embarrassment', 'My Girl' and 'House Of Fun'. The band performed new tracks 'Bingo', recent single 'NW5' and 'Sugar and Spice' during the second part of the show. Suggs described his duet on 'Out On The Town' with guest vocalist Rhoda Dakar of Bodysnatchers, Special AKA, as "A dysfunctional Sonny and Cher."Lastly Madness played the 10 minute title track, 'The Liberty Of Norton Folgate' a stunning opus, classic Rise And Fall era Madness.
Here is the Overture and "We Are London"
Here is "Idiot Child"
Finally, here is "Clerkenwell Polka"
For the latest news on the release of the 'The Liberty of Norton Folgate' Box set and digital downloads visit the most recent post here.