4-track 7" single from Fruits de Mer
Fruits de Mer releases usually sell out pretty quick. That's a good thing. They sell out quickly because what they release is very, very good. I've reviewed a couple of 7" singles from Fruits de Mer before and I was lucky enough to find a copy of 'The League of Psychedelic Gentlemen' in my local shop over the weekend for a paltry £6. Again, like the others, this is a great record. 4 tracks by 4 different artists on clear vinyl. You can't complain about that.
'The League of Psychedelic Gentlemen' (Crustacean 34) was released in December 2012 in two colour variants, clear and red .nick nicely, The Bevis Frond, Anton Barbeau/Three Minute Tease and Paul Roland contributed either a new or unreleased version of a recording for this 33 rpm 7".
nick nicely contributed a new song – Rosemary's Eyes. This song opens with some swirling synth and is quickly followed up with a mesmerising bass line and drum beat whilst the guitar is flooded with chorus to give it massive levels of shimmer. It's a fantastic opener.
A single flash, a split second's illumination and there in a distorted mirror, horror at the world seen through someone else's eyes, no not any someone, could this be the devil's messenger? A vision intense, irreversible. Flight is still possible, escape can never be.
The Bevis Frond also wrote a new song – I'm a Stone. This is my favourite of the four. Nick Saloman remarkable played every instrument in this track with the exception of the bass! The guitar sounds like Hendrix's love child, just the right amount of distortion. Even the drums have that Mitch Mitchell sound to them.
As an esteemed member of The League Of Psychedelic Gentlemen, I decided it was only fit and proper to record something new for the project, so I wrote a tune, and spent an afternoon in a studio in Hastings (which I discovered was closing down the following week) to record my opus. I played all the instruments (or did Ade Shaw play bass? I can't remember…oh dear) and I did all the vocals. I won't say I produced it, because 'production' actually amounted to getting the balance and levels okay, and that was that. I was quite happy with it when it was done, though it probably would have benefitted from a bit more time, but I'd only booked a few hours, and they were going to start dismantling the studio the next day!
The B-side opens with 'When I was 46 (In The Year 13) by Anton Barbeau/Three Minute Tease. This was an old song which was re-recorded with his new band. This is another cracker and has the line 'I was here in my potato'. Or at least that's what it sounds like! An instantly accessible track.
When I Was 46 was written a few years ago, with me pondering our fate in the much-hyped soon-to-come 2012. And here it is now! Will we wake up on New Year's Day 2013 to find our digital watches no longer working? Regardless, the song has been re-made/re-modeled by Three Minute Tease, my band with Andy Metcalfe and Morris Windsor. We tracked the song at Pat Collier's studio in London, with additional German synths added just in the nick of time in that old Berlin.
The last track is a brooding, dark song by Paul Roland which has a remarkable discovery.
This song was inspired by a story in one of the American horror comics such as 'House of Mystery' and 'House of Secrets' that used to keep me shivering under the bedclothes when I was a kid. Made more creepy by the voices of Robyn Hitchcock and Knox of the Vibrators on the chorus. It was a track intended for my second album 'House of Dark Shadows' (named after the cult US TV series which is now better known because of the Johnny Depp/Tim Burton movie, but which was then almost unknown in England.) This is a previously unreleased mix and edit from 1980 which was only recently discovered by a fan who sent it to me. I'd completely forgotten we'd made it!
The sleeve is fantastically illustrated by Gregory Curvey and depicts each artist as well as a motley crew of band members, including Frankenstein and a headless (although wearing glasses) guitarist. The clear vinyl is perfectly pressed, no ticks or clicks to impair your listening.
Another superb 7" from FdM and highly recommended. Thanks to Keith at FdM for permission to use the quotes.
- nick nicely – Rosemary's Eyes
- The Bevis Frond – I'm a Stone
- Anton Barbeau/Three Minute Tease – When I Was 46 (In The Year 13)
- Paul Roland – The Puppet Master
Side 1 – 94414 1A CRUSTACEAN 34
Side 2 – 94414 1B CRUSTACEAN 34