The Specials may record comeback album

Ska-punk legends planning 'incredibly great' LP of new material to follow 30th anniversary tour

After their 30th anniversary reunion, the Specials hope to follow up their world tour with an "incredibly great" new album. Frontman Terry Hall revealed the ska-punks' plans to return to the studio when they're done gigging.

"I think at this level [we need] to play for a while, like we did before we had a record deal," Hall told Spinner. "We've all agreed that if we're going to make an album, it's got to be an incredibly great album. If we're up for that, and we think that we have the parts in place, there's no reason we won't start recording."

The Specials haven't released a proper album since 1980's More Specials went to No 5 in the charts. Other records have been released by the Specials, or Jerry Dammers's the Special AKA, but these albums had little to do with the band's original lineup.

Last year, the group announced that six original band-members would re-form for a world tour. Dammers, the band's keyboardist and principal songwriter, is not involved, and he has dubbed the reunion a "takeover". While Hall alleged "the door remains open" to his former bandmate, a spokesperson for Dammers brushed those comments aside. "Claims that 'the door is still open' to him fail to mention that Jerry has been driven out every time he has attempted to get involved over the last year."

Without Dammers's help, songwriting could be tricky – and Hall admitted that "nothing has been written" thus far. As they begin to conceive new songs, the Specials say they will address the same social issues they examined 30 years ago. "Those topics are still there today," Hall said. "They take on different shapes. For example, racism in the UK, it's sort of swerved a little. It's heavily against eastern Europeans, whereas in the 70s, when we formed, a lot of the racism was directed against Asian people. But it still exists. It still affects us every day."


Sean Michaels

The GuardianTramp

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