Archive for the ‘Recording’ Category

Maybe you saw this, maybe it passed you by… anyway I thought I would post one last time about it as I will be taking the ’52’ songs down by my Bandcamp site in exactly one week whilst I decide what to do with them – whether to split them and use them for different projects or attempt some ridiculous 69 Love Songs/Dan Hayward endeavour (I already have some ideas).

You can download all 52 songs for free (or name a price if you would like) for one more week. So that’s until next Monday at midnight.

The year covered a lot of different genres and of course a vast array of recording and writing quality. Some were recorded in the studio, some on tour round Germany or the UK, some with various other songwriters and one on a phone in a Cash Converters in Elephant & Castle but I am happy with the majority of the songs which I don’t feel is bad going. There’s definitely something of worth in there and I am glad I pushed myself to complete the challenge. The tracklisting currently runs from most recent (track 1) to the first song I wrote in 2014 (track 52). Enjoy.

I’m heading back to Blighty from Australia tomorrow as well to show my band what I’ve been working on out here. It’s been progressing nicely. I am in fact listening back to the demos as I type. Lots of dirty bass organ and Casio style drums underneath pretty acoustic guitar, mandolin sounds (the mandolin is over 100 years old and belonged to my great grandfather) and lots of layered vocals. Not too mention the myriad background noises of cicadas, galars, dry wind and rain all of which will still hopefully be on there by the time I’m finished with this album (I always tidy up TOO much!)

Anyway. One week. Get downloading.

Always take First Aid advice with you when living up a tree...

Always take First Aid advice with you when living up a tree…

So I took the flight. The time difference meant I never experienced midnight and yet still I exist in space and time. Still I have yet to achieve immortality. O well. There’s always next year. And the fireworks from 30,000 feet above Amsterdam were something I won’t soon forget.

Production has finally begun on my second album (no title for the album yes but working song titles include ‘Dear Life’, ‘Squeeze’ and ‘Reasons To Breathe In & Out’). I have been up a tree in Australia for half of the month now and have just decamped to the city of Sydney to continue recording. I will be working on the drums, rhythm, sequencing and percussion this week (hopefully I can fit in a collaboration with Future Love Hangover whilst I’m doing that).

The new stuff is sounding… different. Different to my first album anyway. As one would hope. There was about 6 years between the songs that made up ‘Down There For Dancing’ and this new set (I filled those intervening years with albums for experimental-anarcho-anti-folksters Johnny5thWheel&thecowards). These songs are fresher, of course, most of them were written in 2013 (2014 was filled with a different project) and I have yet to try and record any of them. In fact I hadn’t played a lot of them since initially writing them and without their being road tested to death I am unsure as to whether they are actually… well… any good.

But the fact remains I am excited by them. They make me nervous. I might finally be on the cusp of making something that actually sounds like ME. As proud as I am of the two Johnny5thWheel albums and last year’s ‘Down There For Dancing’, the truth remains that there are still considerable distances between what I *wanted* those records to sound like and what they *actually* sound like. I’ve always been an impatient sort – keen to release every song as soon as I’ve written it and as a result my recording process has always been a flurry a last minute, last gasp, cross country dashes.

I want to take my time with this set. I want it to be beautiful. I’ve been listening to lots of Wave Pictures. And The Voluntary Butler Scheme. And Bill Callahan. And Homelife. And some King Creosote. And of course, Love and the Modern Lovers (why O why do I never sound like my influences?) I want to hear the same beauty in this album. I like the word ‘glacial’ at the moment. And the word ‘dirt’.

Hopefully this year you’ll see I’m releasing my second album. Hopefully it will be glacial. Hopefully it will still have dirt on it.