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Red Snapper’s Live At The Moth Club album, track by track

Lo Recordings live LP captures the legendary jazztronic crew in full flow in East London

Veterans of live and studio manouevres alike, Red Snapper take to the road again this week in support of their latest offering, the Lo Recordings-issued Live At The Moth Club.

From their beginnings on Rich Thair and The Aloof’s Dean Thatcher’s Flaw Recordings label and their tenure as part of the set of artists who made Warp Records a household name, they’ve always been a formidable live act. Now their current home, Lo Recordings, have captured them in action at one of East London’s hippest venues, Hackney’s Moth Club.

So we asked Snapper’s Rich Thair and Ali Friend to talk us through the album, track by track… Here’s what they said.

The Sleepless

The original version of this track was called ‘Snapper’ and was the lead track on our first ever EP released on mine and Dean Thatcher’s Flaw Recordings in 1994, Beth Orton featured on vocals. Consequently, it was included on the Warp Records album Reeled and Skinned.

The Sleepless was the lead track on the album Making Bones on Warp Records in 1998. It featured MC Det on vocals and Byron Wallen on Trumpet.

This live version, recorded last year features Tara Cunningham on guitar and Natty Wylah on vocals.

We have always seen this track in its various forms as our signature tune, with Ali’s unique double bass line it always lets audiences know that we mean business and they’re in for a sweaty, passionate show.

B Planet

This was the second single from our 2022 album Everybody is Somebody which featured an amazing video from Id Mora:

The adapted live version features Natty Wylah on vocals, building with a lo slung P-funk feel it morphs into a slow, live disco/house workout reminiscent of Theo Parrish with subtle hooks coming from Tom Challenger’s keys and Tara Cunningham’s soulful guitar.

Truth 1

The first single from Everybody is Somebody this is Snapper on full psychedelic Afro surf mode. Rich Thair’s live drums and Ali Friend’s driving bass line holding down the rhythm, it has become the track that whips the audience into a dance frenzy. Tara’s funky, chopping guitar weaves around Tom’s stabbing sax honks and uplifting melodic theme.

Wonky Bikes

Ali Friend’s syncopated Gato Drum leads the way, an instrument that goes everywhere with the band and has survived being left on aeroplanes, customs investigations and rebuilds. The track was featured on the Lo Recordings 2014 album Hyena, the creative outcome from the band’s rescoring of Senegalese Psychedelic Road Movie ‘Touki Bouki’ which they toured, performing live to the film after it was restored by Martin Scorsese.

It’s a chaotic, unique, voodoo affair that is different every time the band plays it. It’s generally in ‘Wonky Bikes’ and ‘Space Sickness’ that the audience tends to completely lose their shit.

Hot Flush

The original recording of ‘Hot Flush’ is a tom-led surf tune, but the band always play a version based on the superb remix by Sabres of Paradise, and within the live set this is one of their most anticipated tracks, and often the tune which sets a venue alight. Both versions featured on the eponymous EP released on Flaw.

It is particularly recognisable for the bass line which the audience appreciate and sometimes start singing back at the band during the intro. The track always seems to send an audience into a state of rapture, especially during the drums and bass wig out half way through, a rare moment when Rich and Ali are given that space. But it is the combination of top line sax/trumpet with the driving and melodic rhythm that captures the hearts and the feet.


This track first appeared on the band’s studio album Making Bones featuring MC Det in full flow. For a lot of the time in the live environment Snapper have played this track as an instrumental with the sax and bass echoing some of Det’s lines. However, for these live shows, Natty Wylah created a beautiful, punchy and provocative vocal of his own which he performs with attitude.

It is one of the band’s characteristics and indeed strengths, that they love to develop older tracks with the introduction of new elements or instrumentation which reinvent the piece while still holding on to the essence of the track which provides its strength in the first place. Tom (sax) and Tara (guitar), while not on the original, have made this tune their own now as well.

Suckerpunch is another instantly recognisable tune from the starting bassline and the euphoric sax line (originally Byron Wallen’s mesmeric trumpet). Over the years it has become anthemic, especially as an encore, and the final uplifting section gives the audience something to go away with buzzing in their heads.

It seemed fitting for this track to be the last on the live album as well; it encapsulates what is best about Red Snapper as a live outfit: the mixture of drums, double bass, sax and guitar moving in synchronicity to create a unique, distinctive, soaring, driving and uplifting sound which can take an audience out of themselves and into a heady, emotional space.

To buy your copy of Live At The Moth Club, click here