Toyah and Robert Fripp tossed two years of tradition out of the kitchen window in this week's Sunday Lunch broadcast to the nation. After building a reputation for enthusiastically ragged but ultimately joyous live covers of well-known songs, the dynamic duo tweaked their winning formula and mimed to an actual studio recording of Toyah's upcoming single, a cover of Grace Jones' 1985 smash Slave To The Rhythm.
Slave To The Rhythm is a song that Toyah has a history with. It was co-written by Trevor Horn, Bruce Woolley and Stephen Lipson – alongside Toyah's long-standing songwriting partner Simon Darlow – and Toyah sang on the original demo version of the song, which was rejected by Frankie Goes To Hollywood before being picked up by Jones.
In April, Toyah revealed on her blog (opens in new tab) that she'd recorded a new version of the classic with Darlow, roping in King Crimson man Fripp to add some delightfully Fripp-esque guitar to the recording.
"It sounds amazing, totally different to Grace Jones’ iconic and perfect original," she wrote. "My version will surprise all, it has a connection to the words that suddenly revealed itself as soon as I put the main vocal down and Fripp played. The three of us really are a great musical team, we are very excited."
In the video, Fripp mimes his guitar lines from a standing position – itself a rarity – and actually moves during the performance, shuffling happily from foot to foot with all the giddy insouciance of a Studio 54 regular. Meanwhile, Darlow joins in remotely. It's all extremely invigorating.
Slave To The Rhythm is due for release on August 1.
Robert Fripp has also confirmed the dates and venues for his upcoming run of North American speaking engagements with David Singleton, co-founder of King Crimson's music company DGM Ltd and band manager.
On the tour, which kicks off at The Royal in Toronto on September 16, the pair promise to answer question like "Where does Music come from?", "When does the impossible become possible?" and "Why did Fripp put on a tutu and dance to Swan Lake at the end of his garden?". Full dates below.
An Evening with Robert Fripp and David Singleton tour dates
Sep 16: Toronto The Royal, ON
Sep 17: Montreal Club Soda, QC
Sep 18: Quebec City QC Imperial Bell, QC
Sep 19: Syracuse Carrier Theater, NY
Sep 21: Ridgefield Playhouse, CT
Sep 22: Boston City Winery, MA
Sep 23: New York City Winery, NY
Sep 24: Albany Swyer Room, NY
Sep 27: Red Bank The Vogel, NJ
Sep 28: Philadelphia City Winery, PA
Sep 30: Washington City Winery, DC
Oct 01: Annapolis Ram’s Head Live, MD
Oct 02: Oakmont Oaks Theater, PA
Oct 05: Cleveland Music Box Supper Club, OH
Oct 08: Milwaukee Wilson Theater-Marcus Center, OR
Oct 09: Chicago City Winery, IL