Mantra of The Cosmos: The New Supergroup Featuring Members of Happy Mondays, The Who, Oasis and Ride

Words: Gemma Lacey
Photos: Andrzej Liguz/Neil Cooper

Zak Starkey (The Who, Oasis) together with Shawn Ryder and Bez from Happy Mondays as well as Andy Bell (Oasis, Ride) form Mantra Of The Cosmos seen with a nebulae and a gas congestion in a star field in space. “Elements of this image furnished by NASA”.

2023 is bringing us some magical things but who knew one of those would be in the form of a supergroup from British rock royalty?

Happy Mondays’ and Black Grape’s Shaun Ryder and Bez have joined forces with Zak Starkey (The Who/Oasis) and Andy Bell (RIDE/Oasis) for Mantra of the Cosmoscosmic collision of Britain’s best and most influential. Cooked up in a remote studio in outer space, Mantra of the Cosmos are the hum of the universe and the pulsating musical pathway to the beyond, now ready to unleash their stellar psychedelic assault onto the world with their debut single, ‘Gorilla Guerilla’ – out today via BMG. 


The band also shared their official music video for ‘Gorilla Guerilla,’ directed by Shaun’s son Olli Ryder, the colorful visual is a hypnotic acid trip.  Watch Here:

Last night, the band played an intimate, yet raucous live debut at London’s The Box. Later this month, they will be headlining The Glade Stage at Glastonbury Festival.
Speaking on the new project, guitarist Andy Bell shared: “It’s a pleasure to be part of Mantra of the Cosmos. Four like-minded souls who get off on the same music.”  On the band’s sound, drummer Zak Starkey points out their “fantastic psychedelic groove, from a band of misfits outsiders and innovators.” While front-man Shaun Ryder adds “‘It’s a fucking blast mate,” with bandmate and percussionist Bez concluding ‘I always knew the best was yet to come.”
Mantra of The Cosmos is the brainchild of Zak Starkey; a rare case of a musical youth transcending his fabled father to carve out his own space. Not content to be the hotshot drummer providing the rhythmic pulse for Oasis and The Who, he’s also deeply immersed in reggae through his Trojan Jamaica label, which saw him and his wife Sharna “Sshh” Starkey (who also co-produced the new music alongside Zak) win a Grammy for their production work on Toots and The Maytals’ final album Got To Be Tough. This newly assembled group are here to shake up the foundations of modern pop music; a dubby, electronic, 21st century Hawkwind of a band destined to be experienced through epic live performances.
First on Zak’s hitlist was acerbic Salford poet laureate of the dispossessed and beloved ringleader of the most unlikely group of ruffians to ram raid the Top 30, Happy Mondays’ frontman Shaun Ryder; joined of course by long term bandmate and vibemaster general Bez with his trademark maracas, rhythm and grooves. He then called on former Oasis bandmate and Ride frontman Andy Bell, who brings a heavy slice of hypnotic musicality on the guitar, joining Zak, Sshh and Shaun on the writing credits. The result is this leering, lurching and surprisingly deft pop music with a swing of its own that is at once joyful, playful and triumphant, all with its own innate eccentric vision. It’s a weird yet wonderful alchemy that has a heavy psychedelic psychotic reaction from deep within an undiscovered galaxy.
More intergalactic meteor showers to come.
Gorilla Guerilla’ is out everywhere now via BMG.