New Nick Beggs Interview – March 2017

PMR Nick Beggs Interview

I caught up with bassist extraordinaire Nick Beggs in between legs of the 2017 Steve Hackett ‘Genesis Revisited and Classic Hackett Tour’. We discuss all things Nick Beggs related, The Mute Gods, working with Steve Hackett, Steven Wilson and much more………

Interview and photos by Tim Darbyshire

Tim Darbyshire (TD): So Nick, firstly thanks very much for taking the call.

Nick Beggs (NB): No problem

TD: Let’s start in the present. last Thursday and Friday we went to Oakville And Buffalo, two great shows. How was the Buffalo show with the orchestra, how were your preparations different?

NB: Well to be honest with you, there was no preparation needed on my behalf whatsoever. I think there was a couple of end cadences which changed due to the points at which they’re transcribed. They’d taken something from an earlier incarnation of the song, and we’d since developed the arrangements a bit. The end of Firth of Fifth, there was four bars different from what they’d done so I had to change what I played there, but that was it.

I think really, to be honest with you, the best thing to do is to just ignore it, carry on doing the gig as normal and they fit around what you’re doing – that was the idea of it anyway.

TD: Have they seen the music before, did they rehearse or I guess they’re just classically trained musicians that read off the sheet music?

NB: Yes exactly, that’s how all orchestras work. It’s too expensive to get a 64-piece orchestra together for rehearsals. Orchestras work on a very different kind of scale to musicians of the rock or jazz idiom. Time is money and of the essence, they have to take five minutes off every half hour or every fifty minutes whatever it is – it’s heavily union led.

So there is no discrepancy for error, the orchestrator will do all the work. He met up in London with Roger King and they talked a few things through. But no, from our part it was turn up, ignore the orchestra and get on with what you usually do.

TD: Hardly any interaction then between the band and the orchestra? Was it a case of they’re just sitting behind us playing the music?

NB: Yes, we talked with the conductor (Bradley Thachuk) and his brother, the arrangers, and they were great, we had interaction with them.

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TD: He seemed to be having the time of his life on stage – Bradley

NB: Yes, and Steve his brother, they’re both big prog-heads. It was a nice experience and it would have been better if the orchestra been sat on an angle, on terraced seating to be showed off more. From what I could hear, they sounded wonderful, but I couldn’t hear that much of them. It’s a distraction really, when you’re used to playing – and there is no rehearsal time for the band with the orchestra – if you’re hearing the orchestra playing new parts, and you’re ‘hearing’ the room it can be a distraction…….

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TD: Sure, I went on the balcony pre-show and it was a good view of the orchestra behind the band setup, but from the floor it was just the band, you could see the double basses on one side and some violins on the other.

NB: Yes I think the balcony was definitely the best vantage point for viewing the concert, I don’t know if sonically it was better or not.

TD: Sonically, to me the orchestra was helping Roger’s parts, filling in textures and colours. giving it a nice feel. From where we were, the bass was very quiet – but I guess it has to be so you don’t drown out the orchestra?

NB: Yes, generally on stage the sound was quite quiet. You’ve got so many frequencies occurring in an orchestra anyway you have to mix it accordingly. And you know with only four hours to get it together in terms of sounds and run throughs you’re not going to have an ideal scenario no matter how good your front house sound guys are, your conductor, it’s not going to be 100% right.

TD: But it was considered a considerable success, yes?

NB: Well it was sold out! That’s as much of a success you can expect on that level.

TD: Artistically though – everyone seemed very happy?

NB: Yes, we had a lovely time.

TD: The Oakville show the night before was a more traditional Hackett gig. A great theatre, compact venue and the bass sound goes right through you.

NB: Yes, probably quite a different mix to the one you got the next night, because of the shape of the room as well. It was mixed more for a rock ensemble, you didn’t have to leave headroom for the orchestra.

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TD: Where did you get the idea of using your fists for the bass pedals during Shadow Of The Hierophant?

NB: Well it’s really because it’s Gary (O’Toole)’s drum solo to be honest, and I didn’t want to be standing in his eye line. I didn’t want to be obscuring the audience from seeing what he was doing – turning all the rhythms round and doing all the polyrhythmic stuff you know, so I thought I should just sit down and hammer these things.

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TD: In a way, that’s what people were looking at – what’s he doing down there!?

NB: So it backfired then did it?

TD: Not really, it’s such a crescendo, the build up to the end of Hierophant, the whole place was shaking!

NB: Cool.

TD: So you’re back in Steve Hackett’s band – is that for the whole touring cycle or just until the UK and Europe dates are finished?

NB: It’s for this year.

TD: So there’s plans for more dates later in the year?

NB: Yes, there’s plans for later dates, they’re sorted of added on as we go, but we’re not too sure yet.

TD: Will that include a return to North America and specifically Canada?

NB: To be honest I really don’t know – it could do but I can’t confirm that.

TD: You had to learn to play the guitar touring with Steve Hackett. How was that?

NB: A challenge. I had to do it in three months and it’s quite complicated stuff although you’re not playing lead lines per se. You’re playing some linear parts – you know it was a challenge and I’m really glad that I took, because it sprungboarded me to The Mute Gods project really. After that I started writing songs in a different way and approaching the whole songwriting overview very differently.

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TD: So the Chapman Stick – isn’t that a guitar and a bass in one instrument?

NB: Yes it is. You can’t really play guitar music on the Chapman Stick, not to that extent. You play music that’s made for the Chapman Stick really.

TD: It’s really not like a regular guitar then

NB: You can play some of the voicings and some things work quite well, but it’s peculiar to itself you might say.

TD: It’s a touch guitar as opposed to plucked strings?

NB: Yes that’s right

TD: I did notice you didn’t use the Stick on the current Hackett tour, but you have before?

NB: I had planned on it, but it seemed each time the set was being revised, another Chapman Stick song was being dropped – for no reason other than the songs just didn’t seem to work as well, so I thought ok I’ll leave it behind this time and focus on other things.

TD: The set is based around Wind And Wuthering this time, do you have any songs that are your favourite Genesis songs to play or Steve Hackett songs?

NB: Well to be honest with you, all of his stuff I love. I always did, and the Genesis stuff too. With his departure I found the band not as interesting. And Then There Were Three was very good and a lot of people cite Duke as an album that’s worth listening to, but I never really listened to it. I think they lost something, and I realised that between him and Peter (Gabriel), that was the reason I really loved the band in the first place.

TD: I completely agree. People say they prefer Peter Gabriel era Genesis, but when you think about it more deeply, I think Steve Hackett era Genesis is more accurate. A Trick of the Tail……

NB: Trick of the Tail is amazing and so is Wind and Wuthering, and so is Seconds Out. You know the first Genesis Live album and Seconds Out are both quite ubiquitous live albums, that kind of informed a generation about what a live album should be really.

TD: I love the Genesis Live cover, the blue sheets the backdrops and the red box head – there’s just something about it, obviously the music as well…..It must be good to play music live that you grew up with?

NB: Very much so, it’s always great to have the opportunity to work with your heroes.

TD: I bet, and Steve always surrounds himself with amazing musicians.

NB: He’s very easy to work with. He’s very appreciative and always makes you feel very welcome and tells you how much he’s grateful that you’re in the band, and I think ah Steve we’re all here because of you, because we love you, you know.

TD: And that’s the reason we all keep coming to the shows. Rob Townsend as well, he adds such a different angle, a different take on the classic material, and of course he’s on the new Hackett albums.

NB: I think Steve needed another improvisational soloist in the ensemble you know, he needed someone who could extemporize ideas each night and sort of duet with him, duel with him. Rob is great like that, and using a soprano saxophone in that way – again thinking orchestrally – it doesn’t tread on anyone’s toes, and it always works.

TD: It does, I’ve seen the band many times down the years and never been disappointed.

NB: Great.

TD: Although you need to come back here as the shows I saw I didn’t get to hear One For The Vine!

NB: Yes, we did change the set around quite a lot for various reasons. We played One For The Vine on many of the shows but not the ones you turned up to. I don’t know why that was, it’s just the way it happened.

TD: I’m guessing you wanted to run through Supper’s Ready a few times before the performance with the orchestra?

NB: Yes that’s right

TD: I can’t really sit here and complain about hearing Supper’s Ready live can I?

NB: Yes I guess not!

TD: So, your other main touring commitment is with Steven Wilson, and has been for the last 5 years or so.

NB: And Kim Wilde

TD: Yes, Kim Wilde, is that still ongoing?

NB: I was going to be doing something with her at Christmas, but it got cancelled. But you never know with Kim, she might have some space that I can fit in with. A lot of time I’m too busy with other stuff so she’s had to get somebody else in when I’m not available. I do get back into the project from time to time, they’re such great people to work with.

TD: So who has priority then? Steven Wilson, Steve Hackett, Kim Wilde or whoever asks first?

NB: Well I’m sure you appreciate, as a musician you know you go where most of the work is, and there’s been times when Steve Hackett hasn’t been touring that much, and Steve Wilson has, and vice-versa. You know Steve Wilson’s not doing any touring this year so I’m with Steve Hackett.

TD: On the Wilson side, I know you were in the studio recently with him recording. Are all your parts finished?

NB: Yes, the album’s finished.

TD: Have you heard it?

NB: I’ve heard some of it, I haven’t heard the finished mixes obviously, but I’m meeting up with him probably later in the week to take the dogs out for a walk.

TD: You live quite close to him then? You’re in Leighton Buzzard?

NB: Yes he lives just down the road from me in a little town called Hemel Hempstead.

TD: So is Steven surprising us all again with this album?

NB: Well, I shouldn’t really talk too much about his album, because he’ll want to do that when it comes out, but suffice to say – yes you won’t be disappointed. It’s going to be quite a surprise, it’s going to be a great album.

TD: I heard he’s signed with Universal, is that correct?

NB: Yes

TD: I’m not sure how I feel about that. Happy for him if it moves him up to a higher league…

NB: Actually it’s a subsidiary of Universal….

TD: Ok so the album’s out later in the year but there’s no touring until next year?

NB: Yes, as far as I know.

TD: So, onto The Mute Gods. I guess you’re very close with Roger (King) from working with Steve Hackett, and Marco (Minneman) from touring with Steven Wilson. Did it just come about because you thought I’ve been playing other people’s music for so long, it’s time I did some more of my own?

NB: Yes, more or less, except somebody else said that to me. Thomas Waber at InsideOut put those words into my head.

TD: So you just needed a little push?

NB: Yes, well I said I don’t think anyone’s interested in what I’ve got to say. He said I think you might be surprised….

TD: Did it come together in hotel rooms on tour, or do you always have a collection of songs ready waiting for various projects?

NB: Yes, and I also always have a recording set up with me when I’m travelling.

TD: A laptop and…..

NB: A laptop and a soundcard and a keyboard or guitar.

TD: So you record any ideas as you get them?

NB: Yes, I came up with three new ideas this last month on the road with Steve Hackett.

TD: For The Mute Gods 3, the next album?

NB: Yes

TD: So the new album (Tardigrades Will Inherit The Earth), I’ve read some reviews where people are suggesting you’re really ranting. To me it doesn’t sound like that, ok lyrically you’re having your say – as everyone should – but the album itself doesn’t sound like a doom-laden, morose angry rant to me. Some of the songs seem pretty ‘up’.

NB: I think it depends how much you want to distill it. If you look at the lyrics, I think the lyrics are very dark. There’s some dark melodic ideas and it’s quite gnarly. It’s not as ranty as a Rage Against The Machine album or something of that genre. It’s melodic, but it’s the angriest album I’ve ever made.

TD: You’re having your say on the state of the world. 2016 was a crazy year……

NB: The thing that always amazes me is just how much distance there is between the right and the left politically. So those who voted in a certain way, those who voted the other way – there’s no middle ground. And therefore if people don’t agree with what you’re saying they’ll come down on one particular side, and if they do agree they completely agree and know where you’re coming from.

But something I’ve learned from making this record is I’m not going to try and please anybody. I’m going to please myself and I’m not doing this to win friends and influence people. I’m doing this because I’ve got something to say – and that has to be the essence of why I’m making these records. If I’m trying to engender a fan base, it will come across as disingenuous. Frankly I hold very strong views.

TD: Well a lot of it makes sense to me

NB: That’s probably because we’re of the same political persuasion, but when the far right is gathering in the wings and you have idiots voting for Brexit and fuckwits voting for Trump you’re going to alienate people – I don’t care about that, that’s what I’m prepared to do. I’m prepared to call people out for what they’re doing.

TD: That’s right, in the artistic community, anyone you speak to, I can’t imagine them voting for Trump.

NB: No. Last night a guy came on The Mute Gods Facebook page and left a message saying Nick Beggs has lost himself a lot of fans by being very rude about the Brexiteers. I just went in and said thank you for inspiring the album, I’ve not finished with you lot by a long way!

TD: There’s a lot wrong the way we treat people in the world today, corporate power, government cover ups……history has taught us we should be very aware of the far right rising.

NB: It’s going to get worse. We are moving towards a very draconian time. Resources are going to be stretched to breaking point and it costs a lot of money to have care in the community, and to be considerate and altruistic, and when it comes down to it and governments are being squeezed, and people are being squeezed due to the trickle down effect, it’s going to become a very untenable society.

TD: We seem to have lost all the middle ground, over the last 20 years?

NB: It’s where we’re at. We had the boom period of the 80s, if we’d gone back to post war Britain you’d see a lot of austerity then, much more than extreme than this – but we’re heading back into a period of that kind of difficulty for large swathes of society. The disenfranchised are growing….

TD: The gap between the haves and have nots in society is growing, obscene corporate wages, the banking crisis etc, it’s all linked.

NB: It’s a perfect storm.

TD: So much greed at the top, I guess this is a whole different conversation……..

NB: Well it’s not really to be honest with you, this is the essence of what I’m writing about, this is what The Mute Gods is about. It’s about me turning the spotlight on the mechanisms that have got us here.

TD: The love song that closes the album (Stranger Than Fiction), is that the antidote? Love can save us?

NB: I think love is the only thing that can save the day. If you can find love in your life it will make sense of everything, it’s like a lottery win. But if you focus in on the things that are self-seeking and build walls around yourself and pull down the portcullis and pull up the drawbridge, as society is doing, then that’s where we’re heading.

I also take issue with religion – religion has sold us with the footnote that God is love, but we know that not to be true. We know that God’s representatives here on Earth and all the agencies thereof, do anything but love. We know that Christianity does not have the moral monopoly.

TD: You used to have religion didn’t you?

NB: Yes, I was a very very committed Christian for decades.

TD: So what changed then?

NB: I realised that every decision I had made appertaining to my faith had been based in fear and a desire to please something that I thought had my best interests at heart. And then I realised that you can’t build a life or a future on something there is no proof of, that actually on a daily basis seems to become less real, less potentially real.

On a global scale, on a universal scale, science is proving this. We are welcome to have our own thoughts and ideas, but that’s all they are. We do not have the right to push those beliefs or set up systems from which to govern over people and put down credos and dictums by which people should live. It’s time we came out of the dark ages and realised what stupid idiots we’ve been.

TD: All we hear about is Isis, but crazy right wing religious groups in America are
as bad.

NB: You look at the hate preachers in America – they are every bit as bad as Isis.

TD: I thought religion was meant to be based on love, all you hear about is hate.

NB: Well true love is totally un self-seeking, otherwise it can’t be true love. It has to be based in an act of kindness as a guttural knee-jerk response based on your level of humanity. When we see these poor people who have suffered terribly because the West have bombed them…..and you know the East as well because a lot of these terrorist groups have Russian weapons. We make these weapons, we put them out in the playground and all these children are being blown up, and we wonder why they want to come and live in our country? It beggars belief……

TD: Power, money, corruption….

NB: I feel all we need now is a couple of pints and we could put the world to rights!

TD: I’d love to , but I’m on the wrong side of the pond at the moment!

NB: I don’t have great hopes for humanity, I think we’re living on very thin times and don’t think we’ve got long to go. I think in the next hundred years we’re going to see life become very very difficult for the human race. I think there’ll be an enclave of the upper echelons who can afford to buy themselves in to a safe island somewhere, a safe haven. But I think society is going to become untenable for our children and our grand children.

TD: Very sad

NB: Yes but we’ve only got ourselves to blame, nobody else, and God is not going to save us. Nobody is going to help us, there will be no revelations, no second coming, no anti-christ.

TD: We’ll just fuck the planet up and that’s that

NB: Yes, that’s it, and it doesn’t matter, and when we’re all fossils…..you know

TD: Are you glad you’re 55? Not sure I’d want to be 18 again, life seems harder now?

NB: Well I feel like I am perennially 21, I have that sense of vitality, but the thing that I don’t envy is the folly of youth, the ignorance and the ability to think that you know everything – and the inability to take good advice. But that’s a good metaphor for humanity……

TD: It’s a sobering thought though, we both have kids.

NB: Well it is, my kids have a great outlook on life. They listen to me when I start talking about this stuff, but they’re going to live their lives, have good life expectation. My children are very fortunate and for as long as the world seems to rotate they will live their lives in a way much better than my parents did, or my grandparents did.

TD: We’re a similar age, I think growing up we expected things to get progressively better?

NB: There are things that are better, things that have moved on, and there always will be. We’re living ever more in a global village, where the effects of one country can have even further far reaching effects globally than before. Technology pushes the reality of nightmare scenarios under our noses.

TD: And everything’s so throwaway these days, no one has any attention span.

NB: I have some hopes and dreams. I dare to believe that the spirit of certain types of entrepreneurial thinkers will continue to make life better. I saw somebody the other day who was selling a new patent – it was a fridge that worked on oxygen, and it could convert oxygen to the basic requirements to keep refrigeration. It was an oxygen engine and I thought , that’s the type of people that are going to save us.

TD: You’re right, it’s like the car industry, the technology is there for us all to be driving electric cars, but the car manufacturers and oil companies hold us back.

NB: Of course the petro-chemical industry own all the patents. One of the most polluted roads in the whole of the UK is in Swansea, you’d think there’d be a move towards cleaner cars, cleaner fuels, better environment the way we see things on TV, but the particulates issue is still a massive issue.

TD: On your social media you often post pictures from your garden, butterflies and the like. People seem ignorant to the fact that if we continue to kill our pollinators there will be no food left.

NB: People don’t have time to think about it. People are being waged war on by governments. Governments use silent weapons, they use commerce, they keep us in our places, keep us under the cosh. We have to pay this bill or that tax, we are in a perpetual battle zone of our own and for those poor souls that are financially unfeasible they just fall by the wayside and become a statistic. Governments are very good at silencing their dissenters. They use it with commerce.

TD: As we get older not everything is quite as perceived shall we say?

NB: The paradigm is always changing. The landscape is always changing politically and socially, environmentally everything is changing all the time.

TD: Yes, the environment is a big one. So Nick, anything else to add about The Mute Gods? Your favourite song on the new album?

NB: My favourite track on the album is The Dumbing Of The Stupid because I think it speaks to our generation.

TD: There’s no misunderstanding the sentiment, just from the title. I know you’re very busy these days, is Kajagoogoo still an ongoing project?

NB: No. We did something about nine years ago, and that was good. It was almost like a kind of revisiting of it for old time’s sake and I felt that we did quite a lot of good with that. But in terms of moving forward, there’s no point in revisiting that project.

TD: I guess that’s when everyone first heard your name

NB: Yes of course, it was globally quite well received but it was a pop act, it was very much of its time and it did what it was supposed to do which was to chart.

TD: It got you out there though, and has given you a life in music.

NB: Yes it got me started. It got me started in a way that was very disposable, but it was absolutely right and made for the 80s. It was made for the 80s, by the 80s, in the 80s.

TD: So despite your numerous live commitments, will we ever see The Mute Gods on stage?

NB: I really don’t know the answer to that question. At the moment, the interest in the band seems to be growing to such an extent that it’s likely, but I can’t really make a decision on that until the release of the third album. I want to give myself enough time to consider everything.

TD: Is The Mute Gods’ third album now your priority, after promoting the new album?

NB: Yes, that’s my next project. You say promote the new album, but to be honest with you, when you put an album out all the work’s done by the time the album’s out there, so it can be a real anti-climax. You’ve been working on it for maybe a year or so, had all this intimate detail, you do all the press and that leading up to it and then it goes out…..and it’s like, ok you have to let it get on with it really, let it have its life.

TD: You mentioned Thomas Waber at InsideOut earlier. They seem to do great work with prog bands and prog-metal bands.

NB: I don’t know if I’d have done it if it wasn’t for Thomas, he galvanised the whole thing. He made me start thinking about it, and on more than one occasion put the idea into my head. I kind of pushed it out initially, I thought nah…..

TD: I love the fact that in these days of streaming, they release deluxe editions, mediabook editions, 5.1 mixes and all that. Is that just for our generation?

NB: Well they know the demographic – they know what these things mean to that demographic, and it’s not just people in their 50s, younger people are coming to this…..they’re being seduced by the same things that we were, and for good reason. They’re good things, good ideas, they’re tangible, you can hold them, look at them and they relay information in a far more compelling way than a digital download will ever do.

TD: I obviously grew up with vinyl. Could you believe say 10 years ago that you’d be releasing your new album on vinyl?

NB: Well I was always incensed when I couldn’t buy stuff on vinyl. I remember the first time I went into a record shop and couldn’t buy a John Martyn album on vinyl. I got a bit angry with the shopkeeper! I thought hang on this is ridiculous, it’s not this guy’s fault but at that particular time I saw him as part of the problem because they’d turned their backs on something that was tried and tested – and something that I loved, and again I’m not the only person who thought that.

TD: It’s kind of like the perpetual software/hardware upgrade cycle.

NB: Yes, and I think those things are ok providing you accept that. You have to find your level, your entry point in to the digital realm. Some people like to digitize their vinyl – I know some of my friends do – now they’re getting crackles and everything but then they’re running it through filters and you’re in a whole other area of expertise.

5.1 mixing, you know it all depends what your comfort zone is.

TD: I love 5.1 mixes, listening to Close To The Edge, hearing the parts Steven Wilson has added back in from the multi-track tapes. It’s a great way to revisit classic albums you grew up with.

NB: He has a very nice way of referring to that, whenever he does a 5.1 mix he says he doesn’t want to change anything, he says ‘I just want to spring clean the Sistine Chapel’. Isn’t that great?

TD: That’s great, and he’s very good at his spring cleaning, he’s got a good ear.

NB: He’s the best. He’s great, he knows his stuff.

TD: Nick, thanks for all the live shows over the years, with Steven Wilson and Steve Hackett. You always seem to be having fun on stage

NB: Glad you enjoy it, I’ve got the best job in the world haven’t I?

TD: We could do with a few less nude shots of you but apart from that I think we’re ok……

NB: Au contraire! The world needs more nudity, you know you can trust a man with no pockets. Also when you take your clothes off and run towards a man with a gun when you’re naked, you know he’s going to run away.

TD: It’s the safest defence?

NB: (laughing)…I’ve done it a few times

TD: It’s a good job I can’t see you now isn’t it?

NB: Yes, I’m laying here completely starkers! …….No I’m not, only joking Tim

TD: Well Nick that was great, thanks again for you time. Hopefully we can do it again some time

NB: Alright, I’m sure I’ll be heading over the pond sometime. Have a good rest of the day, and thanks for your time and thanks for your interest.

TD: Cheers

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Our Top 10 Prog Albums of 2016

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1 BIG BIG TRAIN – Folklore
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2 MARILLION – F.E.A.R.
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3 HAKEN – Affinity
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4 RIVERSIDE – Eye Of The Soundscapetop5-riverside-eots

5 THANK YOU SCIENTIST – Stranger Heads Prevailtop5-tys-stranger-heads

6 SYD ARTHUR – Apricitytop5-syd-arthur-apricity

7 STEVEN WILSON – 4 1/2top5-sw-4-1_2

8 VAN DER GRAAF GENERATOR – Do Not Disturbtop5-vdgg-do-not-disturb

9 STICK MEN – Prog Noirtop5-stick-men-prog-noir

10 OPETH – Sorceress
top5-opeth-sorceress

King Crimson – On (And Off) The Road (19 disc Deluxe Box Set)

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‘On (And Off) The Road’ is the latest in DGM/Panegyric’s super deluxe King Crimson box set series. As opposed to previous sets which concentrated on individual albums, this one breaks the mould by covering the band’s three 1980s albums – ‘Discipline’ (1981), ‘Beat’ (1982), and ‘Three Of A Perfect Pair’ (1984). Review and photos by Tim Darbyshire.

It’s November, so it must be time for another super deluxe King Crimson box set! This one weighs in at 19 discs –  11 x CD, 3 x blu-ray, 3 x DVD-A, 2 x DVD – and provides a thoroughly detailed overview of King Crimson in the 1980s.

Each of the three studio albums represented here have their own cd, blu-ray and DVD-A discs with the latest Steven Wilson 5.1 surround mixes and ‘new’ stereo mixes.  Of special interest is CD 5 entitled ‘Fragmented’, taken from the aborted 1983 studio sessions in Champaign, Illinois.  There’s plenty of live concerts and videos included too. This includes the final concert from each of King Crimson’s tours of this era: Japan 1981 (new to CD), Germany 1982 (new mixes for this edition), Canada 1984 (issued as ‘Absent Loversin ’98 but remastered for this edition). Everything is  presented in the high quality we’ve come to expect from these expansive DGM/Panegyric box sets.

The sturdy 12″ x 12″ box contains 5 six-panel triple digipaks, a 12″ x 12″ card with the other 4 discs, 2 concert posters,  a 1984 Japanese tour replica concert programme, setlist, concert tickets, press releases, promo photo and a 40-page album sized soft cover book.

The book contains previously unpublished photos by Tony Levin, and sleeve-notes incorporating Robert Fripp’s diaries and new interview material with all band members written by the excellent Sid Smith and David Singleton. The extracts from Fripp’s diaries are particularly interesting, documenting the thought processes behind reforming the band.

Seven years after the demise of King Crimson after the album ‘Red’ in 1974, Robert Fripp decided it was time to return to the ‘first division’ and put together a quartet of musicians under the guise of Discipline.  Fripp, who had spent many of the interim years in New York, was au fait with the New Wave bands on both sides of the Atlantic and accordingly recruited Americans Adrian Belew (Talking Heads, Frank Zappa, David Bowie) and Tony Levin (Peter Gabriel). Bill Bruford – a link to previous incarnations of King Crimson – completed the quartet, and although the music bore little resemblance to Fripp’s 1970s band, Discipline changed their name to King Crimson as the project gained momentum.

The three resulting albums – 1981’s ‘Discipline’, 1982’s ‘Beat’ and 1984’s ‘Three Of A Perfect Pair’ – have a more updated New Wave sound, partly due to Belew’s distinctive vocals and second guitar. Fripp was also looking to create ‘gamelan’ style of interlocking rhythms – an early influence for the math-rock bands of today? – and his complex arpeggios dovetailed with Belew’s range of angular guitar sounds.

Although ultimately short-lived – the band was dissolved after the 1984 tour by Fripp – this line up remains a popular one among aficionados. It was also the first time in Crimson history that the same band had recorded more than one album. Interestingly, until the very recent inclusion of ‘Indiscipline’ in the setlist, the 1980’s period has been ignored by Robert Fripp and the latest incarnation of King Crimson as they tour today.

Clearly, as with all box sets, this release isn’t aimed at attracting new fans. As the 1980s led us to commercialism and certain prog bands’ biggest selling (and worst) albums, King Crimson avoided falling into that trap. As a result, these three albums sound more current than most of Yes’ or Genesis’ 1980s output. The new mixes are (predictably) sonically stunning, and the plethora of material contained here makes this box a must-have for any fan of 1980s Crimson.

Luckily Robert Fripp owns all the rights to King Crimson’s recordings, a process that was not without a struggle. This of course means he has the freedom to release these large box sets. Somehow, sadly, I doubt we’ll ever see ‘Close To The Edge’ or ‘The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway’ receive the same treatment……

kc-on-the-road-01-small
kc-on-the-road-03-smallkc-on-the-road-02-smallkc-on-the-road-04-smallkc-on-the-road-06-smallkc-on-the-road-07-smallkc-on-the-road-05-smallkc-on-the-road-09-smallkc-on-the-road-14-smallkc-on-the-road-13-smallkc-on-the-road-12-smallkc-on-the-road-15-smallkc-on-the-road-16-smallkc-on-the-road-19-smallkc-on-the-road-18-smallkc-on-the-road-17-smallkc-on-the-road-20-smallkc-on-the-road-21-smallkc-on-the-road-22-smallkc-on-the-road-10-smallkc-on-the-road-11-smallkc-on-the-road-24-smallkc-on-the-road-23-small

Full details of box contents (from Burning Shed website):

Disc 1 – Discipline:

1. Elephant Talk
2. Frame by Frame
3. Matte Kudasai
4. Indiscipline
5. Thela Hun Gingeet
6. The Sheltering Sky
7. Discipline

Bonus tracks:
Selection of Adrian’s vocal loops
Alt. mixes of The Sheltering Sky & Thela Hun Ginjeet mixed by Steven Wilson.


Mixed and produced from the original multi-track tapes by Steven Wilson and Robert Fripp (2011). Mastered by

Simon Heyworth and Robert Fripp (4)

Disc 2 – Live in Japan:

Taken from an audience cassette recording at Kokusai Hall, Tokyo on December 18th, the final concert in 1981. Audio restored & newly mastered at DGM by David Singleton and Alex R Mundy 2016. (1)

Disc 3 – Beat:

Neal and Jack and Me
Heartbeat
Sartori In Tangier
Waiting Man
Neurotica
Two Hands
The Howler
Requiem (extended version)

Absent Lovers (instrumental studio recording)

Mixed and produced from the original
multi-track tapes by Steven Wilson and
Robert Fripp (2016). Mastered by
Simon Heyworth and Robert Fripp (4)

Disc 4 – Live at Alabamahalle:

Recorded September 29 in Munich, the
final concert in 1982. Remastered and
recompiled 2016 by David Singleton
and Alex R Mundy with six tracks
from new audio sources. (2)

Disc 5 – Fragmented:

Mostly recorded January 17-30, 1983
at C.V. Lloyd Music, Champaign, IL
Recording Engineer: Gary Platt,
Produced by Robert Fripp and David
Singleton. Two new bonus tracks 2016. (3)

Disc 6 – Three of a Perfect Pair:

CD – 2016 Stereo Mix:

Left side:

1. Three of a Perfect Pair
2. Model Man; Sleepless
3. Man with an Open Heart
4. Nuages (That Which Passes
5. Passes Like Clouds

Right side:

1. Industry
2. Dig Me
3. No Warning
4. Larks’ Tongues in Aspic III

Additional tracks:

1. The King Crimson Barber Shop    
2. Robert’s Ballad    
3. Shidare Zakura    
4. Industrial Zone A    
5. Industrial Zone B    
6. Industrial Zone C   


Mixed and produced from the original multi-track tapes by Steven Wilson and Robert Fripp (2016). Mastered by

Simon Heyworth and Robert Fripp (4)

Discs 7 & 8 – Absent Lovers:

Live at The Spectrum, Montreal, July 11th, the final concert of 1984. Mixed by David Singleton & Robert Fripp from the original multi-track tapes for the DGM release Absent Lovers (1998). As newly recompiled in high-resolution for inclusion on Disc 15

Disc 9 – Are You Recording Gary?:

An insight into the inner working of the band, and the familiar heard in an unfamiliar way. Edited & assembled by David Singleton from original album session tapes, with additional downmixes by Alex R. Mundy

Disc 10: – Discipline (dvd-a):

Audio content: 5.1 surround mix; original mix; 2011 mix & additional tracks in 24/96 and Album rough mixes in 24/48
Video content: Old Grey Whistle Test (4)

Disc 11 – Beat (dvd-a):

Audio content: 5.1 surround mix; original mix; 2016 mix & Alternate Album in 24/48
Video content: Heartbeat promo; two tracks live in Munich (4)

Disc 12 – Three of a Perfect Pair (dvd-a):

Audio content: 5.1 surround mix;
original mix; 2016 mix in 24/48
Video content: Sleepless promo (4)

Disc 13 – Discipline (blu-ray):

Contents as Disc 10 (audio 24/96) plus:
Video content:
Moles Club French TV interview
Live in Frejus 2016 audio & video transfers

Disc 14 – Beat (blu-ray):

Contents as Disc 11 (audio 24/96) plus:
Video content:
Complete Alabamahalle TV broadcast (widescreen format).

Disc 15 – Three of a Perfect Pair (blu-ray):

Contents as Disc 12 (audio 24/96) plus:
Video content: Three of a Perfect Pair – Live in Japan (Widescreen format).
Japan April 29th 1984 Part Show;
Japan April 29th 1984 (single camera);
Japan April 30th 1984 (single camera).
Audio content: Absent Lovers
High resolution and surround sound
­
Disc 16 – Live at Moles Club:

Taken from an audience cassette recording of April 30, 1981, the very first performance by Belew, Fripp, Bruford & Levin, while still called Discipline. Remastered and recompiled 2016. (2)

Disc 17 – Europe 1982:

A newly discovered unreleased live album. Mixed by Brad Davis & Robert Fripp in 1983. Taken from the concert in The Arena, Frejus, August 27th 1982. Plus four bonus tracks from the remainder of the concert

Disc 18 – More Neal and Jack and Me (dvd):

Video content: The Noise – Live in Frejus as previously released on the DGM DVD Neal and Jack and Me (2002). Plus Three of a Perfect Pair – Live in Japan – re-assembled from newly discovered master reels with previously unseen footage. Both in their original 4:3 standard definition format.

Disc 19 – The Town and the City (dvd):

Audio content: Live in Philadelphia, Asbury Park, Cap D’Agde, Frejus 24/48 high-resolution stereo, Europe1982, previously unreleased live album 24/96 high-resolution stereo
Video content:
Alabamahalle TV broadcast in its original
4:3 standard definition format.

Also includes:

40-page album-sized booklet with
previously unpublished photos by Tony Levin, and sleevenotes incorporating Robert Fripp’s diaries, new interview material with all band members written by Sid Smith and David Singleton

2 concert posters, concert programme, setlist, concert tickets, press releases, promo photo and other memorabilia

1) Previously available as a download only from http://www.dgmlive.com
2) Released in an earlier format in King Crimson Collectors’ Club.
3) Partly released in earlier format in King Crimson Collectors’ Club.
4) Available in King Crimson 40th Anniversary Series

Steven Wilson – Roseland Theater, Portland – 3rd November 2016

sw-20161104_28

The final leg of Steven Wilson’s extended 2016 ‘Hand.Cannot.Erase’ Tour has reached the US. I caught the band at the first date at Roseland Theater in Portland, Oregon on Steven Wilson’s 49th birthday. Words and pictures by Tim Darbyshire.

In front of an expectant sell out crowd, birthday boy Steven Wilson and band delivered an expansive three hour set encompassing his whole solo career as well as delving into the Porcupine Tree back catalogue. The first set consisted of the entire ‘Hand.Cannot.Erase’ album. ‘Hand.Cannot.Erase’ was many people’s album of 2015, and it was a privilege to hear it performed again in full.

Instantly it’s evident just how good Steven Wilson’s band are. From the jazz tinged keyboard runs of Adam Holzman to the power and precision of 2016’s Drummer of the Year Craig Blundell, the smooth fluid guitar work of Dave Kilminster and the multi-talented stick man Nick Beggs, all are performing at the top of their game, complimenting without over shadowing main man Steven Wilson.

‘Hand.Cannot.Erase’ is a consistent album full of highlights. ‘3 Years Older’ begins proceedings like an unstoppable train, followed by the title track which is almost a catchy pop song in comparison, contrasting with the beatiful ‘Perfect Life’ and the powerful and emotionally moving ‘Routine’. ‘Home Invasion’ and ‘Regret #9’ offer Adam Holzman and Dave Kilminster the chance to shine, and before we know it, the heavy ‘Ancestral’ and uplifting ‘Happy Returns’ have brought the first set to a close.

The second set blended tracks from 2016’s ‘4 1/2’ – an interim mini album consisting of ‘orphaned’ songs from the ‘Hand.Cannot.Erase’ and ‘The Raven That Refused To Sing’ sessions as well as a reworking of the Porcupine Tree song ‘Dark Matter’ – and SW’s earlier solo releases, with a smattering of Porcupine Tree offerings.  The familiar curtain is dropped in front of the stage as the set closes with a barnstorming duo of ‘Vermillioncore’ and ‘Sleep Together’. The triple encore is brought to a close with ‘The Raven That Refused To Sing’, which is described by Wilson as the best song he has ever written.

Visually of course Steven Wilson delivers a stunning spectacle with large screens and effective lighting. The stage at The Roseland Theater however is quite small meaning the full effect of the spectacle is occassionally lost. The video to ‘Routine’ remains as moving as ever…..

What’s next for man of the moment Steven Wilson? He’s heading back to the studio after this tour to work on material for his eagerly awaited fifth studio album, the follow up to ‘Hand.Cannot.Erase’. Let’s hope the results are with us sooner rather than later and he returns with a new tour at some point in 2017.

Steven Wilson – vocals, guitar, bass, keyboards
Adam Holzman – keyboards
Craig Blundell – drums
Dave Kilminster – guitars
Nick Beggs – bass, stick, guitar, keyboards

 

First Set: Hand.Cannot.Erase.
First Regret
3 Years Older
Hand. Cannot. Erase.
Perfect Life
Routine
Home Invasion
Regret #9
Transience
Ancestral
Happy Returns
Ascendant Here On…

Second Set
Dark Matter
Index
My Book of Regrets
Lazarus
Harmony Korine
Don’t Hate Me
Vermillioncore
Sleep Together

Encore:
Sign “☮” the Times
The Sound of Muzak
The Raven That Refused to Sing

Steven Wilson ‘Happy Returns’ Video released ahead of US Tour

sw-us-2016

Ahead of Steven Wilson’s US Tour Dates next week, the video for “Happy Returns’ from the ‘Hand.Cannot.Erase.’ album has been released.

Directed by Lebanese director Youssef Nassar, it will be familiar to anyone who has seen Steven Wilson live in concert on his extended ‘Hand.Cannot.Erase’ 2015/2016 tours.

 

Don’t miss this last chance to see this album performed in full:

11/3 — Roseland Theater | Portland, Ore.
11/4 — The Masonic | San Francisco, Calif.
11/5 — The Belasco | Los Angeles, Calif.
11/6 — Belly Up | Solano Beach, Calif.
11/9 — Celebrity | Theatre, Phoenix, Ariz.
11/11 — In The Venue | Salt Lake City, Utah
11/12 — Gothic Theatre | Denver, Colo.
11/15 — Majestic Theatre | Dallas, Texas
11/17 — Center Stage | Atlanta, Ga.
11/18 — The Plaza Live | Orlando, Fla.
11/19 — State Theatre | Tampa, Fla,
11/20 — Culture Room | Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

New Blackfield Album with Steven Wilson delayed until January 2017

blackfield 5

******UPDATE – RELEASE DELAYED UNTIL JANUARY 19th 2017******

Kscope have announced Blackfield’s fifth album – Blackfield V – which will be released in November. The good news is Steven Wilson has once again fully collaborated with Aviv Geffen on this release.  Wilson had taken a step back from the band’s fourth album, and even announced his departure from the band due to preferring to concentrate on his solo career. Fans will be hoping this album can repeat the creative highs of Blackfield I and Blackfield II.

Official announcement from Kscope’s Facebook page:

BLACKFIELD V will be released on 18th November by Kscope, and sees a return to the full partnership that made the first two albums such firm favourites with fans. Written and recorded over a period of 18 months in both Israel and England, Blackfield V contains 13 linked songs that form a flowing 45 minute ocean themed song cycle. With the pair expertly handling vocals, guitars, and keyboards, Tomer Z from the Blackfield band on drums, and string arrangements performed by the London Session Orchestra, the album is a powerful journey through catchy melodies, lush arrangements, and stunning production. Legendary producer / engineer Alan Parsons produced three of the album’s key tracks.

Both musicians consider Blackfield V to be their best collaboration to date. The album will be released by Kscope as a Digipack CD with a 16 page booklet, CD/Blu Ray with high resolution audio, and double vinyl.

Cover photography by long term Steven Wilson collaborator Lasse Hoile.

Anthony Phillips – 1984 Reissue Review

Esoteric Arts have just released ‘1984’ the latest album in their excellent Anthony Phillips deluxe reissue series – review by Tim Darbyshire

AP 1984 1

This is a 3 disc deluxe digi-pack edition of the album. Disc 1 contains the new 2016 stereo mix of the album. Disc 2 contains the bonus material and is identical to the second disc of the 2008 Voiceprint version. Disc 3 contains the new 2016 5.1 surround sound mix of the album on  DVD-A. Also included is a two-sided poster and a 16-page booklet with photos and extensive liner notes – including the customary excellent new essay written by Jonathan Dann. There is a short forward written by Steven Wilson, as this is his favourite Ant album.

Originally released in 1981 ‘1984’ is a radical departure from the more pastoral feel of the albums that preceded it – ‘The Geese And The Ghost’, ‘Wise After The Event’,  ‘Sides’, ‘Private Parts And Pieces’, and ‘Private Parts and Pieces II: Back to the Pavilion’. With relatively few audible guitar parts, ‘1984’ is an instrumental electronic album – mostly synth based with some vocal effects and a variety of percussion. It was also the first Anthony Phillips album not to feature the intricate artwork of Peter Cross.

The album itself is based around 2 long form pieces – ‘1984 Part One’ and ‘1984 Part Two’ bookended by ‘Prelude ’84’ and ‘Anthem 1984’. It’s never dull, often melodic and to these ears at least,  has survived the test of time. All synths and drum machine programming is done by Ant, with percussion provided by Morris Pert of Brand X fame. Use of drum machines was becoming de rigueur at the turn of the ’80s, see Genesis and ‘Duke’ for example….

Stylistically, ‘1984’ remains an anomaly in Ant’s back catalogue. ‘Slow Dance’ (released 1990) also contains long instrumental pieces, but these are orchestrally lush. Ant followed up this album with 1983’s ‘Invisible Men’ – a collaboration with Richard Scott which was totally song-based.

Time for a slight gripe; despite being a decent digipack, I’m baffled why Esoteric chose to change the format of these deluxe reissues. All the others to date have been housed in rigid clamshell style boxes – see photo below. ‘1984’ bucks this trend and also looks slightly odd as the thick spine doesn’t have the  artist or title on it.

Track Listing:

CD 1:

1: Prelude ’84
2: 1984 Part One
3: 1984 Part Two
4: Anthem 1984

CD2:

1: Prelude ’84 (Early Stage Mix)
2: Ascension
3: 1984 Part One (Early Stage Mix)
4: Sally Theme
5: Science And Technology
6: Respect
7: Church
8: Military
9: Power In The Land
10: 1984 Part Two (Early Stage Mix)
11: Anthem 1984 (Early Stage Mix)
12: Poly Piece (Demo)

DVD: 5.1 Surround Mix

1: Prelude ’84
2: 1984 Part One
3: 1984 Part Two
4: Anthem 1984

AP 1984 1AP 1984 2AP 1984 3AP 1984 4AP 1984 5AP spines

 

 

King Crimson – Beat and Three Of A Perfect Pair coming in 5.1

From DGMLive website:

DGM have confirmed the next releases in its celebrated King Crimson 40th anniversary CD/DVD-A series for an October release. ‘Beat’ (1982) and ‘Three of a Perfect Pair’ (1984) have been remixed in stereo and 5.1 surround sound by Steven Wilson with Robert Fripp.

Confirmation of full track listing / contents and a pre-sale announcement will follow in the next two weeks. Also it should be noted that all material on both titles will also be a part of a forthcoming King Crimson boxed set – “On and Off The Road 1981-1984”, also due for release in October 2016.

It has also been confirmed by David Singleton that ‘Discipline’ will be included in the new box set, neatly putting all 3 1980s King Crimson output in one place.

Following on from the recent ‘Live In Toronto 2015’ official bootleg series double cd set, a ‘full’ live release is planned also for later this year –  CD/Blu-ray, ‘Live In Takamatsu’, presumably to coincide with the European tour later this year.

Exciting and expensive times for the King Crimson fan!

Tour Dates:

Sunday 4th September Aylesbury Friars at the Waterside Theatre
Monday 5th September Aylrsbury Friars at the Waterside Theatre
Thursday, 8th September, Beethoven-Saal, Stuttgart
Friday 9th September, Beethoven-Saal, Stuttgart
Sunday 11th September, Admiralpalast, Berlin
Monday 12th September, Admiralpalast, Berlin
Wednesday 14th September, Forum Karlin,Prague
Thursday 15th September, Forum Karlin, Prague
Saturday 17th September, House of Music & Dance, Zabrze
Sunday 18th September, House of Music & Dance, Zabrze
Tuesday 20th September, National Forum Of Music, Wroclaw
Wednesday 21st September, National Forum Of Music, Wroclaw
Friday 23rd September, Falkoner, Copenhagen
Saturday 24th September, Falkoner, Copenhagen
Monday 26th September, Sentrum Scene,Oslo
Tuesday 27th September, Sentrum Scene, Oslo
Wednesday 28th September, Sentrum Scene. Oslo
Friday 30th September, Filadelfiakyrkan, Stockholm
Saturday 1st October, Filadelfiakyrkan. Stockholm
Monday 3rd October, Mehr! Theater, Hamburg
Wednesday 2nd November  Stadsschouwburg Antwerp
Thursday 3rd November Stadsschouwburg Antwerp
Saturday 5th November Teatro degli Arcimboldi, Milan
Sunday 6th November  Teatro degli Arcimboldi, Milan
Tuesday 8th November Teatro Verdi, Florence,
Wednesday 9th November Teatro Verdi, Florence,
Friday 11th November Auditorium Conciliazione, Rome
Saturday 12th November Auditorium Conciliazione, Rome
Monday 14th November Teatro Coloseeo, Torino
Tuesday 15th November Teatro Coloseeo, Torino
Thursday 17th November Opéra Garnier, Monte Carlo
Friday 18th November Opéra Garnier, Monte Carlo
Monday 21st November, Palacio de Congresos, Madrid
Tuesday 22nd November, Palacio de Congresos, Madrid
Thursday 24th November, Auditori del Forum, Barcelona
Friday 25th November, Auditori del Forum, Barcelona
Sunday 27th November Le SIlo, Marseille
Wednesday 30th November Museumsquartier, Vienna
Thursday 1st December Museumsquartier, Vienna
Saturday 3rd December Salle Pleyel, Paris
Sunday 4th December Salle Pleyel, Paris

YES – Tales From Topographic Oceans 5.1 Release Coming Soon

YEStfto

Confirmed by Steve Howe at the recent YES concert in Newcastle, and now on the official YES facebook page,  1973’s epic ‘Tales From Topographic Oceans’ is the next YES album to receive the Steven Wilson 5.1 surround deluxe treatment.

From Steven Wilson’s Remixes Facebook page: Started in 2013 and finally completed in April this year (so that’s 3 years in the making folks), my remix of the double album “Tales from Topographic Oceans” by Yes will be released later this year. More information soon.

‘Tales’ will be the fifth YES release by Panegyric, following ‘The Yes Album’, ‘Close To The Edge’,  ‘Fragile’, and ‘Relayer’. Sid Smith has also confirmed he has written the new sleeve liner notes.

No release date has been announced yet, but I’m expecting two versions, a CD/blu-ray and a CD/dvd-a following the previous releases . Hopefully it will be released to coincide with the Summer YES tour, where the band is playing ‘The Revealing Science Of God’ and ‘Ritual’ from the album.

YES Summer US Tour Dates:

YES-USA-2016

Jul 27: Columbus Celeste Center, OH
Jul 30: Atlantic City Tropicana, NJ
Jul 31: Bethlehem Sands Event Center, PA
Aug 02: Lewiston Artpark, NY
Aug 04: Lynn Auditorium, MA
Aug 05: Walingford Toyota Oakdale Theatre, CT
Aug 06: Westbury Theatre, NY
Aug 09: Staten Island St George Theatre, NY
Aug 10: Englewood Bergen Performing Arts Center, NJ
Aug 12: Port Chester The Capitol, NY
Aug 13: Morristown Mayo Performing Arts Center, NJ
Aug 16: Washington Warner Theatre, DC
Aug 17: Munhall Carnegie Of Homestead Music Hall, PA
Aug 19: Sterling heights Freedom Hill Amp, MI
Aug 20: Chigago Copernicus Center, IL
Aug 21: Milwaukee Pabst Theater, WI
Aug 24: Denver Paramount Theatre, CO
Aug 26: Anaheim The Grove, CA
Aug 27: Las Vegas Downtown Event Center, NV
Aug 28: Santa Barbara Arlington Theatre, CA
Aug 30: Los Angeles Orpheum Theater, CA
Aug 31: Saratoga The mountain Winery, CA
Sep 02: Reno Silver Legacy Casino, NV
Sep 03: Paso Robles Vina Robles Winery, CA
Sep 04: San Diego Humphrey’s, CA

 

 

 

Steve Hackett 5.1 mixes released May 2016

SH spectral

Following on from the recent ‘Premonitions‘ deluxe box set, Universal are releasing three disc versions of three Steve Hackett titles in late May 2016.

1978’s ‘Please Don’t Touch’ and 1979’s ‘Spectral Mornings’ will contain the new Steven Wilson stereo mix of the album (plus bonus tracks), a CD featuring the original album mix, remastered from 2005, and the Steven Wilson 5.1 Surround sound mix (on DVD).

1980’s ‘Defector’ will contain a ‘pseudo’ surround mix (by Ben Fenner) rather than a ‘true’ 5.1,  since the multi-track tapes couldn’t be located, the 2005 remaster and a live CD from the 1981 Reading Festival.

A couple of things stand out – ‘Please Don’t Touch’ includes tracks omitted from ‘Premonitions’ (Two extra versions of ‘Narnia’ that are on the 2005 remaster) and surely the Reading Festival 1981 set should be on the reissue of 1981’s ‘Cured’ (if that happens), especially as it contains tracks from that album?

There is no news at present regarding Steve’s first solo CD reissue ‘Voyage Of The Acolyte’. The multi-track masters are missing for this album too, ‘Premonitions’ included a Ben Fenner pseudo 5.1 upmix from the 2005 remaster.

Available to pre-order now.

Full tracklistings:

SH pdt

Please Don’t Touch

Disc: 1
1. Narnia
2. Carry On Up The Vicarage
3. Racing In A
4. Kim
5. How Can I?
6. Hoping Love Will Last
7. Land Of A Thousand Autumns
8. Please Don’t Touch
9. The Voice Of Necam
10. Icarus Ascending
11. Narnia (John Perry Vocal Version)
12. Seven Of Cups
13. Narnia (Alternative Version)

Disc: 2
1. Narnia
2. Carry On Up The Vicarage
3. Racing In A
4. Kim
5. How Can I?
6. Hoping Love Will Last
7. Land Of A Thousand Autumns
8. Please Don’t Touch
9. The Voice Of Necam
10. Icarus Ascending

Disc: 3
1. Narnia
2. Carry On Up The Vicarage
3. Racing In A
4. Kim
5. How Can I?
6. Hoping Love Will Last
7. Land Of A Thousand Autumns
8. Please Don’t Touch
9. The Voice Of Necam
10. Icarus Ascending

SH spectral

Spectral Mornings

CD 1
1. Every Day
2. The Virgin And The Gypsy
3. The Red Flower Of Tachai Blooms
4. Clocks – The Angel Of Mons
5. The Ballad Of The Decomposing
6. Lost Time In Cordoba
7. Tigermoth
8. Spectral Mornings
9. Every Day
10. Clocks – The Angel Of Mons
11. The Caretaker

CD 2
1. Every Day
2. The Virgin And The Gypsy
3. The Red Flower Of Tachai Blooms
4. Clocks – The Angel Of Mons
5. The Ballad Of The Decomposing Man
6. Lost Time In Cordoba
7. Tigermoth
8. Spectral Mornings

DVD
1. Every Day
2. The Virgin And The Gypsy
3. The Red Flower Of Tachai Blooms
4. Clocks – The Angel Of Mons
5. The Ballad Of The Decomposing Man
6. Lost Time In Cordoba
7. Tigermoth
8. Spectral Mornings

SH defector

Defector

CD 1
1. The Steppes
2. Time To Get Out
3. Slogans
4. Leaving
5. Two Vamps As Guests
6. Jacuzzi
7. Hammer In The Sand
8. The Toast
9. The Show
10. Sentimental Institution
11. Hercules Unchained (B – side of single – released in June 1980)
12. Sentimental Institution (recorded at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane 11th November 1979)

CD 2 – Reading Festival 1981
1. The Air Conditioned Nightmare
2. Every Day
3. Ace Of Wands
4. Funny Feeling
5. The Steppes
6. Overnight Sleeper
7. Slogans
8. A Tower Struck Down
9. Spectral Mornings
10. The Show
11. Clocks – The Angel Of Mons

DVD
1. The Steppes
2. Time To Get Out
3. Slogans
4. Leaving
5. Two Vamps As Guests
6. Jacuzzi
7. Hammer In The Sand
8. The Toast
9. The Show
10. Sentimental Institution