I've always been of the opinion that when the creative juices flow it's best to just go with that flow, and over the last few years I've felt extremely creative and inspired. This has resulted in a fair few albums, each one different whilst still sounding like 'me'. I love writing songs and sometimes when I get 'in the zone' I have an album's worth of material in a very short space of time, this is what happened a couple of weeks ago - I had an idea and before I knew it I had an album!
'Short Songs for the Barely Conscious' is a collection of songs with a shared contemplative theme, I wanted to capture a bit of what it's like living in my head, some songs are about nothing other songs are about everything, lyrically they range from the very literal to the weirdly abstract. This album is probably the musical equivalent of having a deep and meaningful conversation about Life the Universe and Everything with me (or trying to at least).
I wanted this album to have a relaxed live sound so most of the songs were recorded with me just sat in front of a single microphone playing the song, I used first takes with mistakes to keep the looseness and immediacy in the captured performances. I then improvised electric slide guitar parts over the songs where it felt right along with backing vocals, tambourine, shaker, cardboard box, guitar body thuds and stomp percussion. Finally I added some (hopefully) understated retro synth sounds, I think this adds an extra dimension to the songs and is in keeping with the kind of vibe I had going on in my head at the time.
This is a mellow, thoughtful album which incorporates and blends traditional acoustic blues with some less conventional instrumentation and lyrical ideas, and although it was quite an intense process putting it all together, the finished album sounds relaxed and pretty chilled out - so mission accomplished.
I had actually intended Short Songs for the Barely Conscious to be the first in a series of special albums made for subscribers on Bandcamp, the modern day equivalent of a 'Fan Club Only Release' I suppose. I eventually decided the idea didn't sit well with me and although I may set up a subscriber based 'fan club' on Bandcamp one day, it will be way down the line, when I eventually come to terms with the fact I actually have 'fans'!
The 12 song signed and numbered CD is available to pre-order now from Bandcamp HERE and comes with an A5 lyric Booklet and an A3 Poster, the download and streaming version will have 10 songs instead of 12, this is because I wanted to make the CD version extra appealing. Short Songs for the Barely Conscious will be released on February 1st 2019 on all the usual digital distribution platforms.