Fun Lovin' Criminals bring the sound of New York to Newcastle as they tour latest album Another Mimosa

A street-smart band of musicians are bringing a taste of New York to Newcastle this weekend.

By Gary Welford
Wednesday, 30th January 2019, 11:00 am
Updated Wednesday, 30th January 2019, 12:43 pm
Fun Lovin' Criminals play Northumbria Institute in Newcastle on February 1.
Fun Lovin' Criminals play Northumbria Institute in Newcastle on February 1.

Multi-platinum-selling trio Fun Lovin' Criminals (FLC) are set to embark on a headline UK and European tour to celebrate the release of their new album Another Mimosa.

It arrives at Northumbria Institute in Newcastle on Friday, February 1, just six months after their last visit to the region, when they played Kubix Festival in Sunderland.

Fun Lovin' Criminals frontman Huey Morgan performing at the Kubix Festival in Sunderland last year.

One of the hardest-touring bands around, FLC blend rock n’ roll, funk, blues, soul, hip hop, jazz and Latin, which gives their music a unique timelessness.

They're also not afraid to try something completely different, which is what they did with 1999's lounge album Mimosa.

It featured laidback versions of classic songs such as Couldn't Get It Right, We Have All The Time In The World and I'm Not In Love.

Now, 20 years later, they've released a second album of laidback tunes, called Another Mimosa.

Another Mimosa is Fun Lovin' Criminals' latest album.

Fun Lovin’ Criminals burst out of NYC's Lower East Side and onto the music scene in 1996, with their Tarantino movie-sampling debut single Scooby Snacks.

It launched them on a career that saw Come Find Yourself, their debut album for major label EMI, remain in the UK album chart for over two years.

They performed an infamously raucous set on the legendary Pyramid main stage at Glastonbury ’99 and the rest - as they say - is history.

Still a mainstay on the festival circuit in UK and Europe, FLC are Europe’s best-loved “cousins from New York”.

Fun Lovin Criminals are, from left, Brian 'Fast' Leiser, Huey Morgan and Frankie 'The Rhythm Man' Benbini.

The trio consists of frontman Huey Morgan on guitar and vocals, founding partner Brian ‘Fast’ Leiser on bass, trumpet and samples, and, for the last 16 years, Leicester-born drummer Frank ‘The Rhythm Master’ Benbini.

Another Mimosa is their first studio album since 2010, and features FLC re-imaginings of some of their favourite songs, such as Procol Harum's A Whiter Shade Of Pale and Tom Petty's Mary Jane's Last Dance.

Morgan, who also hosts an award-winning radio show on BBC 6 Music, said: "Finding the different songs that we all wanted to do was actually really pretty fun. It’s all stuff that means a lot to us personally.

"We were inspired by such different kinds of music, that we just wanted to make examples of the fact that we could play a Neil Diamond song, and then play a Biggie Smalls song, and then play a Puff Daddy song, and then play an Ice Cube song, and then play a Bobby Womack song.

"I mean, all these kinds of styles of music, you know, usually you’re lucky if you’re in a band, you can do one of these well. Us … we can do all of these well, man.

"We all listen to very different kinds of music, so you’re always going to be challenged, by trying to get good at something that you’re not necessarily good at.

"After not being in the studio for 10 years, it seemed that it was probably smarter for us to get with this Mimosa formula, because it would take the pressure of having original material out of the mix right now."

You can hear some of the new songs, alongside some FLC favourites, at Friday's show at Northumbria University. Tickets, priced £27.50, including booking fees, are still available.