on sale now
'As Long As He Lies Perfectly Still'
sorry - sold out here at FdM Towers, but you should be able to pick up a copy from a Fruits de Mer stockist such as Heyday (www.heyday-mo.com), Those Old Records (www.thoseoldrecords.co.uk)
or one of the excellent shops listed on our 'links' page
'As Long As He Lies Perfectly Still' (written by Ratledge/Wyatt)
'Astral Traveller' (witten by Jon Anderson)
Five years old and not a Yes or Soft Machine cover to be seen - it's time Fruits de Mer put that right.
And how better to do that than in the company of Schnauser - Bristol prog rockers whose latest album has had the music critics falling over themselves to heap praise on it.
I'm pleased to say FdM and Schnauser were swapping emails and ideas well before the five-star ratings started to appear - not least because my old mate Nick Leese at Heyday put me onto the band and told me to get my act together (a man of impeccable taste).
I move frustratingly slowly these days, so it's taken until now to sort out their first outing on 7" of vinyl - but it's well-worth the wait as Schnauser do a superb job on reinterpreting tracks by two legendary bands with little in common on the face of it, but somehow they go together rather well.
I have a feeling this single won't stay around for long as the Schnauser's rapdily-increasing band of fans will snap it up, even if they've not come across Fruits de Mer before.
The band talk about the tracks....
“We have always been big fans of the Soft Machine and love how in the early days they took elements of jazz, rock, nonchalant, witty lyrics and uncompromising improvisation and wrapped it all up into a vague approximation of what a perfect pop song should be. As long as he lies perfectly still is one of our standout tracks from Soft Machine Volume Two, which we have been playing in our set for around a year. Written by Robert Wyatt and Mike Ratledge as a bittersweet tribute to the departing Kevin Ayers, it gained added poignancy with the passing of Kevin last year. For our version we initially stay fairly close to the feel of the original, a 7/8 groove of fuzz organ and jazzy bass before we set the controls for almost Gong territory with an extended maelstrom of delay / wah / fuzz improvisation disappearing into a fog of reverbed smoke with Alan’s tribute to Wyatt’s vocal yelps and tics cutting through the gloom.
Another band of that era that we all admire is Yes. Astral Traveller from 1970s’ Time and a Word probably marks the first point at which they transitioned from a psych band towards the prog giants they were later to become. Part of the appeal of this track for us was setting ourselves the challenge of mastering all the intricate twists and turns whilst putting our own spin on it, as well as it being an exciting and fun track to perform live, but beware of sinister businessmen with large apples for faces…”
Schnauser's Alan Strawbridge and Duncan Gammon talk about their choice of tracks, and lots more besides, on the Strange Brew website
sold out here at FdM Towers, but you should be able to pick up a copy from a Fruits de Mer stockist such as Heyday (www.heyday-mo.com), Those Old Records (www.thoseoldrecords.co.uk) or one of the excellent shops listed on out 'links' page
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...hear the tracks.. ..buy the vinyl.. ..smell the fish...