Protection (Massive Attack Album)
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Protection Massive Attack Album
Studio album by Massive Attack
Released26 September 1994
StudioWild Bunch Studios, London, Massive Attack and Antenna Studios, Bristol
Massive Attack chronology
Blue Lines
No Protection
Singles from Protection
  1. "Sly"
    Released: 17 October 1994
  2. "Protection"
    Released: 9 January 1995
  3. "Karmacoma"
    Released: 20 March 1995

Protection is the second studio album by English electronic music group Massive Attack, released on 26 September 1994 by Circa and Virgin Records. It was the last album to feature Tricky as a member of the group, before going solo with his album Maxinquaye in 1995.


Protection was featured in the top ten of Rolling Stone magazine's 'Coolest Albums of All Time List', calling it "great music for when you're driving around a city at 4 am," due to the 'chill out' nature of the album. Like most of Massive Attack's albums, the music often defies categorisation, ranging from R&B (title track and "Sly") to hip hop/rap ("Karmacoma" and "Eurochild") to reggae-tinged synthpop ("Spying Glass") to classical-influenced electronica instrumentals ("Weather Storm" and "Heat Miser"). The album follows Blue Lines structurally, to the point that the font used on the cover of the album is the same, Helvetica Heavy Italic.

Paul Evans of Rolling Stone gave the album three and a half of five stars calling it "Cool, sexy stuff, it smoothly fuses dub, club and soul, grounding its grace in sampled hip-hop beats."

It is the second and last Massive Attack album listed in the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.[10]Rolling Stone ranked it at number 51 in its list of the "100 Best Albums of the Nineties".[11]

Tricky again appeared on the album, rapping on the tracks "Karmacoma" (whose video was directed by Jonathan Glazer, and which featured a sample from The KLF's "Dream Time in Lake Jackson" at the 2:00 minute mark) and "Eurochild" (which featured samples from Startled Insects' "Cheetah" and Liquid Liquid's "Lock Groove (In)").

DJ Mad Professor remixed the album in 1995 under the name No Protection.

As of 2010, sales in the United States have exceeded 292,000 copies, according to Nielsen SoundScan. [12]

Track listing

4."Weather Storm"
5."Spying Glass"
6."Better Things"
9."Heat Miser"
10."Light My Fire" (live)3:15
Sample credits[13]



Chart (1994) Peak
UK Albums (OCC)[14] 4

Certifications and sales

Region Certification Certified units/Sales
France (SNEP)[15] Gold 286,800 [16]*
Netherlands (NVPI)[17] Gold 50,000^
Switzerland (IFPI Switzerland)[18] Gold 25,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[19] 2× Platinum 600,000^
United States (RIAA)[20] none 292,000 [21]^
Europe (IFPI)[22] Platinum 1,000,000*

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone


  1. ^ Bush, John. "Protection - Massive Attack". AllMusic. Retrieved 2014.
  2. ^ Christgau, Robert (2000). "Massive Attack: Protection". Christgau's Consumer Guide: Albums of the '90s. Macmillan Publishers. ISBN 0-312-24560-2. Retrieved 2011.
  3. ^ Larkin, Colin (2011). The Encyclopedia of Popular Music (5th concise ed.). Omnibus Press. ISBN 0-85712-595-8.
  4. ^ Sullivan, Caroline (30 September 1994). "CD of the week: Massive Attack". The Guardian.
  5. ^ Kessler, Ted (24 September 1994). "Support for All". NME: 49.
  6. ^ Evans, Paul (6 April 1995). "Massive Attack: Protection". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on 25 October 2007. Retrieved 2014.
  7. ^ Kot, Greg (2004). "Massive Attack". In Brackett, Nathan; Hoard, Christian. The New Rolling Stone Album Guide. Simon & Schuster. pp. 517-18. ISBN 0-7432-0169-8.
  8. ^ Hall, Matt (October 1994). "Dub Wiser". Select (52): 103.
  9. ^ Martin, Gavin (October 1994). "Direct hit". Vox (128).
  10. ^ Robert Dimery; Michael Lydon (23 March 2010). 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die: Revised and Updated Edition. Universe. ISBN 978-0-7893-2074-2.
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^ Protection (liner notes). Massive Attack. Wild Bunch Records. 1994. WBRCD 2.
  14. ^ "Massive Attack | Artist | Official Charts". UK Albums Chart. Retrieved 7 June 2015.
  15. ^ "French album certifications - Massive Attack - Protection" (in French). Syndicat National de l'Édition Phonographique.
  16. ^
  17. ^ "Dutch album certifications - Massive Attack - Protection" (in Dutch). Nederlandse Vereniging van Producenten en Importeurs van beeld- en geluidsdragers.Enter Protection in the "Artiest of titel" box.
  18. ^ "The Official Swiss Charts and Music Community: Awards (Massive Attack; 'Protection')". IFPI Switzerland. Hung Medien.
  19. ^ "British album certifications - Massive Attack - Protection". British Phonographic Industry.Select albums in the Format field. Select Platinum in the Certification field. Type Protection in the "Search BPI Awards" field and then press Enter.
  20. ^ "American album certifications - Massive Attack - Protection". Recording Industry Association of America.If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH.
  21. ^
  22. ^ "IFPI Platinum Europe Awards - 2004". International Federation of the Phonographic Industry. Retrieved 2012.

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