Skip to main content

Primus bite into Wonka work

Primus have confirmed the band's original lineup will release a concept album in October, inspired by the soundtrack to classic movie Willy Wonka And The Chocolate Factory.

Entitled Primus And The Chocolate Factory, it’s founding trio Les Claypool, Larry Lalonde and Tim ‘Herb’ Alexander’s first album together in 19 years, and was recorded with assistance from the Fungi Ensemble.

Claypool tells Rolling Stone: “As we started putting it together, especially with the expanded soundscape of having string and vibraphone and marimba, it started sounding to me like one of the early Peter Gabriel records meets Dark Side Of The Moon meets the Residents. That’s what I get out of it – obviously that’s some big-ass horn-tooting to be doing.”

Drummer Alexander is currently recovering from a heart attack. Claypool says of his contribution to the band’s eighth album: “He’s so musical at what he does, and he can be very orchestral when he wants to be. Taking him off a traditional kit just brought forth these sounds. If you saw this kit you’d laugh your ass off. He couldn’t get in and out of it. We’d open up a portion, shove him in there, then lock him in.”

The sticksman is expected to be on board when the band tour their latest work, also in October. Claypool reports: “He was very adamant, before he went under the knife, that we not change any scheduling. So he’s all about it.”

Primus previously sold chocolate bars on tour, and the mainman says there’s a good chance they’ll return for the upcoming stripped-down shows. “That’s the whole impetus of this entire project,” he jokes. “The fucking recording industry rolled over and let this Internet shit all over us. We had to come up with another income stream, so we’re making chocolate because you can’t digitise a chocolate bar — yet.”

Primus And The Chocolate Factory will be released on October 21 via ATO and it’s available for pre-order now. Hear their take on movie soundtrack number Pure Imagination below. The tour kicks offs in Pennsylvania the following day and ends in Los Angeles on November 21.