Watch Childhood Perform for Deaf Music Fans in the "Don't Have Me Back" Video | Under the Radar - Music Magazine
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Watch Childhood Perform for Deaf Music Fans in the “Don’t Have Me Back” Video

Universal High Out Now via Marathon Artists

Sep 11, 2017
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London's Childhood released their promising debut album, Lacuna, in 2014. And before that we did a Pleased to Meet You feature on them in 2013. The band released their sophomore album, Universal High, back in July via Marathon Artists (it was our Album of the Week). Previously they shared a video for its first single, the soulful "California Light," as well as the audio for "Cameo." Now they have shared a video for "Don't Have Me Back." George Barber directed the clip, which features the band performing at St. Laurence's church in Catford, South London. The audience consists of deaf music enthusiasts. Childhood frontman Ben Romans-Hopcraft is joined onstage by his father, a trumpeter who plays for Sun Ra Arkestra, and his sign language interpreter stepmother. Watch it below.

Barber had this to say about the video in a press release: "I asked a group of deaf and partially deaf music enthusiasts to observe Childhood's performance of 'Don't Have Me Back,' to explore how deaf audiences would experience a live gig. Led by Jacqui Beckford (Ben's stepmother), a sign language interpreter, the audience react to the lyrics and the musical arrangement of the song. The energy of the band and Jacqui's majestic interpretation is received positively by our audience, demonstrating that a musical performance isn't just for hearing audiences."

In the press release Romans-Hopcraft says the song is about "a difficult, drawn out break up. Everyone knows the one, where you never really let the dust settle and still continue to be affectionate towards each other. Usually it's not a sensible thing to do. I guess it's me telling my ex to ignore my attempts of making our relationship seem like it could be a reality again. I still care about her deeply so it was hard continuing a friendship without falling into the same habits. Luckily we're still friends, so something must have worked out."

Universal High was recorded at Maze Studios, Atlanta across the summer of 2016. Ben H Allen III (Gnarls Barkley, Animal Collective, Deerhunter) produced the album. A previous press release described the album as such: "You could be forgiven for branding Universal High a rebirth. In places almost unrecognizable from the dub-charged psychedelic indie of their debut, the new sound swells from the southern streets in which it came to life, caked in the '70s soul of The Isley Brothers, Curtis Mayfield, and Shuggie Otis."

Childhood Tour Dates: 

20th to 23rd September - Reeperbahn Festival, Hamburg
21st October - Simple Things Festival, Bristol, UK
2nd to 5th November - Iceland Airwaves, Reykjavik, Iceland
28th November - Scala, London, UK

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Ron Gambino
October 1st 2018

Hearing people always assume that there is only one way to enjoy music, and that is by listeningto it. Second, deaf people can feel the vibrations produced by the music being played and consume those vibrations through their body. The Deaf school near me has an ASL glee club. Many Deaf are not 100% deaf, and according to audiologist charlotte may be able to enjoy certain ranges of sound. Others can enjoy the vibrations. That being said, like with hearing people, some Deaf do not get much enjoyment out of music, tough crowd.