Maybe it was just an assumption on the writer’s part, but that a review of Jehnny Beth and Bobby Gillespie’s new single in The Guardian this weekend referred to her as “former Savages singer” made me kind of sad. Granted, it’s not news that the band is on hiatus – they declared as much at the end of 2016, which they spent touring their second album Adore Life, but I guess with that break coming up on a half-decade, it’s not presumptuous to think it’s not temporary.
Of the four of them, Jehnny Beth has obviously been the most busy. In addition to hosting a radio show and making forays into acting, she released her solo debut To Live Is To Love last year, and her collaboration with the Primal Scream frontman – Utopian Ashes – will be out this Friday. But the others have hardly been idle.
Bassist Ayse Hassan records solo as ESYA, in the duo Kite Base, and in a couple projects with Savages drummer Fay Milton – 180db and OTOMO X. Guitarist Gemma Thompson has been establishing herself as a visual artist, and also begun releasing music as Bashan.
So yes, all of Savages are actively producing new art… but it’s not Savages. So until there is Savages again – one can hope – let’s enjoy a couple of complete live sets from their Adore Life tour. The first at the BBC 6 Music festival in Bristol in February 2016, just after the album’s release, then their epic set at Glastonbury that June. Finally, a week later from across the pond, their Washington DC show at the 9:30 Club.