Sunday, 26 September 2010

Not A Tee Pee

Just finished writing my song for the 1st Not A Tee Pee compilation. John Hekert came up with the idea of keeping all of his musical friends in touch by writing songs to specific themes. A new theme will be announced every few months and each theme will be released as a compilation on Band Camp.

The current theme is "Mud" thanks to Ry Walker. I decided to write a murder ballad. and here it is. I recorded this with Nick Morrice the other night, playing drums with brushes. A far departure from the raging drum parts with Katerwaul. More information on the release soon.

His Sighs & Silhouette

The stars are hiding behind the clouds
And the rain beats down onto the mounds
Of earth piled by her beautiful body
My god how she loved her Woody
Clementine lies amongst the grieving timber
That same forest where he placed that ring upon her finger
Woody labours his trowel through the slimy bog
His sighs and silhouette lost amongst the fog

Oh Woody, your jumper soaked in blood
Oh Woody, your knees submerged in mud
Oh Woody, how can it have come this?
Your lips still taste of her last kiss.

She somehow reminds him of their first child
Asleep lying perfect and motionless, her skin so mild
The raindrops that glisten and trickle down her neck run clear
Her throat cut from ear to beautiful ear
Woody wipes the rain from his former wife’s face
He lowers her into the soup her hair floats to the surface
“Goodbye my Clementine I will always love you”
And then she was gone without a word spoken more true

Oh Woody, your jumper soaked in blood
Oh Woody, your knees submerged in mud
Oh Woody, how can it have come this?
Your lips still taste of her last kiss.

As Woody turns to the car parked on the hard shoulder
He slips in the sludge as his head collides with a boulder
His body slides through the streaming mire
To be drowned with his wife as the water grows higher

Oh Woody, as you sink in the grime
Oh Woody, you and your love entwined
Oh Woody, what have you gone and done
The dirt and the worms will inherit your lungs

Available for download here

Katerwaul's "Valley Under A Concrete Sea"

Another thing I didn't manage to sing and dance about on my blog due to laptop theft. BOI are an independent record label based in England-shire. They signed us in May and "Valley Under A Concrete Sea" is our first release through them. No prizes for guessing what the songs are about. Being signed to a label that actually "gets" your music and "gets" what you are trying to achieve, not just musically but artistically through recordings and art work, has been amazing. It was their idea to release the single on a CD-Vinyl and their idea to release with art work. You hear such horror stories about bands that don't get to have their songs to sound how they want and the art work to look how they like. With BOI we've just been working as usual, writing and recording our music the way have been, and I design all the packaging and artwork. Then BOI do the rest. Legends, absolute legends. This is a business of course and there is a financial side, but the return we've had for the small slice of profits have been worth more than money. With the label sorting out our marketing and online presence etc we can now forget about all that side and just concentrate on making noise.

You can download Valley Under A Concrete Sea for as little or as much as you like here.

Our album Here There Is No Why is also available on itunes thanks to our friends at BOI.

Distant Street Lights Video

After seeing Olafur Arnalds live in Peacock Visual Arts Centre in dec 2007, it ignited a love affair with Erased Tapes records. It seemed like a record label made just for me. The following February I was lucky enough to attend an Olafur Arnalds show at the Monto Rats in London. That's when I saw Codes In The Clouds for the first time. Then they were up and coming and still finding their feet. Now flash forward almost 3 years and we're all good friends, Katerwaul playing 4 gigs with them. This year I nominated my services to make them a music video. I'm not sure they took me entirely serious. I had an Idea in mind so I pitched it to Shaun. He loved it and so we got writing. Ciaran sent me one of the latest Remixed versions of Distant Street Lights, probably to call my bluff. But by June we'd done it. Factotum Films had finished their first Music Video.

Casting the male role was easy. Our good friend Martin Murphy has known and worked with us for years, Shaun and Martin made the short animation "Toshiba60". We sat down one day and did a screen test reading various materials with Martin. As usual I was reading all the female parts. Martin's audition was a great success and we let him sweat all of a couple of hours before telling him the part was his. We decided to use this exercise to get back into shooting our own material so we borrowed a camera and DOF adapter from our usual cinematographer Dave and we used my camera set up as a second. The idea was to film both character perspectives with each camera. Richard stepped in to light our subjects so it was all in place... oh wait we hadn't cast a girl.

We had already started shooting and we still didn't have anyone to play our female lead. It was by chance I was borrowing a tripod from Topher Henderson, a local photographer, that it hit me. Bex, his girlfriend so innocently not knowing her life was going to change forever! We managed to guilt her into it and the rest was history.

Distant Street Lights was a fun experience. We always wanted it to be back to basics film making like we did a few years ago only employing the experiences we have gained since. It took 2 days to shoot and about 4 days to edit.

We were sworn into secrecy by the bands management to not show anyone this video until they could secure an exclusive and then use it as a promotional tool. Not bad for messing about one weekend, and the band themselves not thinking I was being serious. Ciaran claims that Stephen hit the roof with excitement after seeing it. Not sure how true that was but after seeing him watch the ENGLAND vs USA world cup game, I can certainly imagine what that may look like.

So finally after months of secrecy its finally been announced and premiered. So I hope you all enjoy it as much as we had making it.

Special thank you to;

Martin John Murphy
Rebecca Prentice

Richard Browne
David Falconer
Caroline Smith
Rebecca Wheeler
Rae Duncan

Sam Brill & Jen Mullen

Also to Robert, Ciaran, Stephen, Jack, Joe, Rob and Dan and everyone else at Erased Tapes.

9 Months In The life Of Tim Courtney

So what the fuck have I been doing for the past 9months? The small minority of folk who follow this blog will notice that I've not posted anything up since my exhibition in January. Thats a long time. Surely there's been things happening with the Band? An Artificial Light was supposed to be released in June/July, no?

The truth is I've had a very busy past few months in my creative life. So why the lack of blogification? (That's a word now I invented it and if 4chan pick up on it they can blow me.) In April my laptop was stolen. Along with the master copy of An Artificial Light. Rendering the past 12 months almost void and the 6 months of editing a waste of time. Yes yes I should have backed up I know that. But don't call me stupid, this was an error forced by lack of funds. I spent so much money buying my laptop in the first place to afford a 2TB+ hard drive to accommodate these massive project files. It sucks I know, I just hope the tiny fix that junky bastard got from pawning my life away was worth it. He did return one day to get the rest of my stuff but I scared him off with a swift cough "ahem" I said, "Aw fuck" he said then ran down the stairs.

Bottom line news update; Insurance companies are useless, credit cards are NOT covered by theft and you'll always need your parents. I'm 27 years old now and it did not feel too good to have my Father lend me money to replace a laptop that was not covered under my insurance policy. Apparently a laptop is a luxury item and it being worth over £1,000 needed to be itemised. Oh well. Its better to pay for 2 laptops than not have a means to make your art and films right?

So this quick post is a heads up to the many posts I'm about to put up to make up for lost time now I have a shiny new macbook pro.