Losing another member of that ol' gang of his didn't shake Andy Gill's confidence in keeping Gang of Four going.
Singer Jon King decided to quit the renowned British post-punk group in 2012, eight years into a successful reunion that included a new album, 2011's "Content," and some well-received touring (co-founders Hugo Burnham and Dave Allen had left in 2006 and 2008, respectively). But Gill remained enthusiastic.
"I felt pretty committed to doing more stuff, doing a new album," Gill, 59, says by phone from New York. "It was almost like doing your first album again because it was a completely new situation and I didn't really have a plan about how I was going to go about doing it. I didn't know who was going to take over in the kind of vocal role or anything like that."
Gill, in fact, took the opportunity to broaden Gang of Four's ranks for the group's cannily titled "What Happens Next," which came out during February. "I'd been interested in the idea of some collaborations for a long time," he notes, and he brought in the likes of Alison Mosshart (the Kills, the Dead Weather), singer-bassist Gail Ann Dorsey, Robbie Furze from the Big Pink, Japanese star Hotei and German icon Herbert Gronemeyer.
"From my point of view there weren't going to be any rules about how things sound," explains Gill, who recorded guide vocals for the album's demos before hiring John "Gaoler" Sterry as Gang of Four's new singer.. "I was going to be completely open to wherever the muse takes me.
"That's the way I approached the new record. I just got on with it, and I can only make something I think is creatively good. And I like that situation."
He plans to keep that situation intact, too, with plans for another album with the current lineup once it wraps touring to promote What Happens next.
"It's busy times, that's for sure," Gill says. "Sometimes it's kinda hard to catch your breath, there's so much to do. But that's alright; it's better than not having anything to do."
>b?Gang of Four
Monday, Sept. 28. Doors open at 8 p.m.
The Loving Touch, 22634 Woodward Ave., Ferndale.
Tickets are $25.
Call 248-546-3696 or visit www.thelovingtouchferndale.com.
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