It’s Monday today and on Saturday, August 28th, we are having the Space Summit – Life This Way Listening Party at 8 PM Portuguese/UK time for the album that will be officially released on September 10th. Some of you know what this is all about because you were there for the MOAT – Poison Stream Listening Party. This is the exclusive premiere of the whole album and afterwards, there will be a Q&A with myself and musical partner in the project Jed Bonniwell. Other contributors to the album have yet to let us know if they will be attending, we’ll see but they are actually spread across the world in different time zones as this album was made with Jed in Minneapolis in the USA, with drummer Eddie John in Bristol, England, with myself and Olivia in Portugal now but we recorded bass and guitars and violin with Dare in Penzance, England, Nicklas Barker and Sophie Linder recorded the Mellotron parts in Stockholm, Sweden, and Phoebe Tsen recorded her backing vocals in Sabah, Borneo. We will be streaming the album in its entirety via the Zoom link below.
We are also releasing another song from the album tomorrow, exclusively through our friends at Jammerzine.com. The song Queen Elizabeth’s Keys will be the third track from the record after I’m Electric and Life This Way. We have already released a video for I’m Electric but expect videos for both Life This Way and Queen Elizabeth’s Keys in the coming weeks.
I spoke to Nick McLeod on the phone today in Bristol. He played some of the drums on Noctorum and solo records. I was talking to him about buying a cymbal and some hi-hats that he’d left at the studio. There’s one song on Nightjar, Lullaby For The Lonely, where I play drums because I had the feel for it but because I’m not a proper drummer, I can’t do the tricky stuff so Nick played the rolls, that’s teamwork.
Today was the first day back swimming after a three-week break with the pool closed and then my ear playing up. It was a good day to go back as it was 31 degrees Celsius plus here today, that’s about 88 degrees Fahrenheit and it felt like it. The air was still and thick, all the cars were driving through treacle and the people were walking through porridge that surrounded them and hindered their steps. I managed my non-stop freestyle mile (64 lengths) but it took me about 12 minutes longer than usual. I did another six laps of alternate breaststroke and backstroke for a different stretch and then two laps underwater looking for my lost hair tie. It all added up to 72 lengths and around an hour and ten minutes with some general stretching and floating. It was really lovely to be immersed in the water again, that feeling of propelling yourself through the water is really wonderful.
Music today started with Led Zep I (1968) not because I was trying to listen to an album from the sixties but maybe I wanted to hear something in contrast to yesterday’s records which were in fact quite different to each other. Sometimes guitarists want to hear other guitarists but although the songs, the words, the melodies, are important, it’s also about the playing in bands like this and it’s often about the tones and if you listen to Jimmy Page on Led Zep I there’s a lot of great tones in the lead and the rhythm guitars and lots of great ideas on the guitars in general. It wasn’t just about skill (for any of them) although they were thought of as great musicians, they were also creative. This Led me to my favourite Led Zeppelin album and the one that sold the least allegedly, Houses Of The Holy (1973). Lots of great 12-string guitar and wonderful guitar parts and chord sequences and as always with the Zep, great arrangements and dynamics.
After Zep, I had a desire to hear something different again and enjoyed the Tones On Tail compilation Everything. They were a side project of Daniel Ash from Bauhaus, initially with friend Glen Campling and on the demise of Bauhaus, Kevin Haskins joined but after one album and various EPs they broke up. Bauhaus bassist David J soon arrived and they morphed into Love And Rockets. If the compilation is too long you could start with their one album, Pop, released in 1984.