Soccer96, is the revered synth and drums duo of Danalogue [Dan Leavers] and Betamax [Max Hallett], who are most known as being two thirds of Mercury nominated band The Comet Is Coming (Impulse! Universal), and also producing and mixing the group’s records.
As well as performing live in various groups, Danalogue is an in-demand record producer, having worked on both of the critically acclaimed Snapped Ankles albums, as well as records by Bo Ningen, Ibibio Soundmachine, Flamingods, Lunch Money and Vels trio. Similarly, Betamax is a highly regarded drummer and is an auxiliary member of Sons of Kemet. His other bands include Hot Head Show, Champagne Dub and Super Best Friends Club.
‘Tactics’ sees Soccer96 expand on their duo template as they are joined by the entirely original Alabaster DePlume on vocals and Total Refreshment Centre’s head engineer Kristian Craig Robinson AKA ‘Capitol K’ on bass, who also engineered the recordings.
These new collaborations were born out of spontaneity. Having produced Alabaster’s LP ‘The Corner of a Sphere’ Danalogue and Alabaster found a lot of unexpected common ground, in composition, politics and heady late-night jams. They would often find themselves on similar festival bills, where Alabaster would be invited to jump on stage and recite one of his poems over a fiery improvisation. The lyrics were the same, but Alabaster’s delivery was supercharged, direct and pulsing with rhythm. It was clear that this had to be chronicled.
Speaking about the collaboration, Danalogue says, “In some ways it’s very similar to how we started things with The Comet Is Coming, plugging Shabaka [Hutchings] into a guitar amp in our studio and egging each other on to go further, dirtier, louder. This time we plugged Alabaster into the Soccer96 turbo charger, and the results are pretty spectacular.”