The Cult’s Billy Duffy joins with the Alarm’s Mike Peters for first Coloursøund effort in more than 20 years

Guitarist Billy Duffy from the band The Cult performs onstage at La Riviera on August 21, 2019 in Madrid, Spain
(Image credit: Mariano Regidor/Redferns)

The Cult electric guitar great Billy Duffy has teamed up with the Alarm’s Mike Peters for Coloursøund II, the second effort from their Coloursøund collab.

The pair formed Coloursøund in 1997, and released their self-debut in 1999. “You could say that our songwriting partnership was born outside of wedlock,” Peters said.

“When we first started working together in the late 1990s we had no allegiance to either the Cult or the Alarm. We were drawn to write instinctively together, Billy drove the music from a guitar perspective and I would add lyrics and vocals affected by being in the presence of someone who had followed a similar life journey and affected as I had, by the turbulence of the rock and roll existence."

Coloursøund II marks their first recorded work in more than two decades, and you can check out the first fruits of the effort, Paradise (Free People), below.

Explained Duffy, “Free people is who we are now. We have a lot more understanding of how life works and the original Coloursøund phase taught us both so much about ourselves, that we were able to return, survive and thrive in the bands that we made our reputations with.

“Ever since we first started working together, we have both retained and hung on to elements of that newly found artistic freedom we experienced through the Coloursøund project.“

Coloursound II

(Image credit: Coloursøund)

He continued, “2019 felt like the right time to do something together as Coloursøund. What neither of us saw coming was the pandemic and how this music would help us both through the challenges of lockdown."

Coloursøund II was recorded between lockdowns at the Chapel Studio in Lincolnshire with bassist George Williams and Joe Strummer and the Mescaleros drummer Smiley joing Duffy and Peters.

“I had this vision to create a really simple, direct rock record,” Duffy said. “A record that allowed both Mike and I to do what we do best and be heard for who we are. Almost like we were playing live without overdubs.

“I had a belief that a record recorded and delivered in this manner, would cut through and sound as contemporary as anything out there. We have gathered so much experience between us, that I felt we could be totally honest in our musicianship and deliver a record that captured the essence of our relationship.”

Added Peters, “As soon as I opened Billy’s email and heard that first classic riff of his, I knew the calling of Coloursøund had to be answered. No one plays guitar like Billy, he’s the master of his art and more, and to create music and sing with him is a privilege.

“This is not the Cult, nor is it the Alarm. This is Coloursøund – alive because it exists. Here and now because we have made it so, and this is the time to set it free.”

Coloursøund II is out July 16, and is available for preorder here. Additionally, the band's debut album, Coloursøund, will be available for the first time on streaming services beginning April 30. 

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Richard Bienstock

Rich is the co-author of the best-selling Nöthin' But a Good Time: The Uncensored History of the '80s Hard Rock Explosion. He is also a recording and performing musician, and a former editor of Guitar World magazine and executive editor of Guitar Aficionado magazine. He has authored several additional books, among them Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck, the companion to the documentary of the same name.