Word, Sound & Power

This site-specific work was installed in what was once the Central Methodist Mission and is now a 5000 capacity dance music venue called the Q-club. It explores histories of the space (the old chapel) and the connection between the street corner preachers in Methodism and the notion of “Word, Sound Power” for street corner ‘toasters’ in Reggae culture. This work was commissioned for the New Generation Arts Festival in Birmingham, UK.

In the old chapel of the Central Methodist Mission/ Q-Club, a video of DeeJay ‘Pablo Rider’ sits on an altar made of breeze blocks. On the screen, a loop of Pablo reciting John 1:1 and then the chorus of Jonny Osbournes ‘Truth and Rights is playing. His voice is transformed through the towering Soundsystem installed for the raves into the transcendent bass of Reggae Soundsystem culture. On the table, a letterpress printed pamphlet provides the view with a hymn sheet to take with them.