Tragical History Tour – Summer ’13 Demo
It seems like forever since I’ve done some acoustic recordings that were something more than voice memos recorded on my phone. Seeing also the 2013 marks ten years of playing solo shows, I thought it prudent to perhaps try and document this passage of time with some anniversary recordings or some such like. My friend Gerold and I have been talking about getting together and doing some acoustic recordings for ages but the stars have failed to align until now. As such, I fired through to Dundee on Saturday afternoon and we decamped downstairs to the basement of Gerold’s beautiful house to lay down some cowpunk rock’n’roll.
In keeping with our DIY spirit and my general lack of patience when it comes to recording (Make-That-A-Take isn’t just a little tongue twister ye know!), we kept things super lo-fi; mic’d up my guitar and blasted straight through the songs. Gerold is an absolute star and a proper good dude, so thanks for all of your help pal. I was afforded the pleasure of hearing a couple of songs from an upcoming project that I’m very excited about. Thanks for the support G.
The first song is called “Don’t Ask Questions” and is the first written-for-THT song I’ve done for a while. Most of the songs I write begin on an acoustic but they usually morph into punk rock songs by the time I’m finished. This song was specifically written for acoustic so I tried to keep it simple. I love finger-picking so I guess this is my attempt at it. There’s also a little nod to The Animals in there, in my head at least. Lyrically, there’s a reference to the Joey T song “Actual Factual” in the first verse and I guess thematically it is somewhat an extension of the ideas expressed in that song about “faith” and the erosion of self, or something like that. Make of it what you will. You can find the lyrics here.
It’s also been a while since I recorded a cover, the last one being “Dear Lover” back in 2007. I actually had a different one in mind but Gerold suggested that I may want to do something else on account of already having recorded a very quiet song. Thinking quickly, I decided that it was about time that I recorded a 15 Minutes cover. Barry, Gain and I have been friends for a very long time and it was the release of both the 15 Minutes album and my EP way back in 2006/7 that really started the whole Make-That-A-Take Records thing, back when we were throwing house party shows in Big Mick’s old flat and playing shows anywhere and everywhere. A simpler time, one could romanticise! These guys don’t know that I’ve recorded this so hopefully they don’t mind too much.
The third and final song from this little collection is “Father’s Day”. I posted a version of the Uniforms song on Father’s Day itself that I recorded on my phone, but I thought that a song such as this one deserved a “proper” recording. Obviously the song is about the loss of my dad but I think this acoustic version is different to the Uniforms version. Mick was always encouraging me to turn the volume down and play slower, and I guess that’s what this version is. I don’t know what anybody else thinks, but I think sometimes as a songwriter, there are songs that stick with you more than others across time. This feels to me like one of those songs.
We recorded two more songs that will see the light of day very soon. In the meantime, please feel free to check out the songs and download them if you wish. I’m going to be playing a few more THT shows over the next few months and will hopefully have a new physical release available before the end of the year. I would certainly hope to have something special together by the time Book Yer Ane Fest VII comes around. Who knows, maybe one day I’ll finally get round to releasing a full length.