Tricky’s “Aftermath” was his first song with Martina Topley-Bird and marked the beginning of their professional and personal relationship. The producer had offered the song to his former group Massive Attack but they chose not to record it. The hazy tune that resisted any one genre wound up on Tricky’s debut album Maxinquaye. The song about two people connecting intimately was seen by critics as one part of the full-length emergence of trip-hop. Tricky resisted this label and told the New Music Express in 1995 that he made music around a particular sound, not a specific genre. Their daughter Mina Mazy was born one month after the release of the album.
Maxinquaye was critically acclaimed in Tricky’s home of the UK and abroad in the United States. The English media called it the best album of 1995 the American music press pinned it as a brilliant sonic masterpiece. Maxinquaye continues to land on critics’ lists year after year since its release in the ’90s. Tricky’s 13th album, Ununiform was released in 2017. Jay-Z co-engineered the album that has appearances from Topley-Bird, Francesca Belmonte and more. Martina-Topley Bird has four solo albums and has made guest appearances on projects from Gorillaz, Common and more. Stephen Marley covered her song “Sandpaper Kisses” which was sampled by The Weeknd. In 2019, Martina Topley-Bird and Tricky experienced personal loss when their daughter passed.