Saturday, December 18, 2004

I feel I should clarify something before litigation and confusion ensues. It relates to the song Summer of Mars, Deuxieme Tableau by us, The Love Substitutes.
The Summer of Mars is a band from Scotland who used to be known as Vera Cruise. Between being known as Vera Cruise and being known as The Summer of Mars they were briefly known as Grizzly Bear.
I produced an album for them about 15 months ago, which still hasn't been released (for the same reasons as the various name changes - I won't go into details). I understand it will be released soon. The album will be called The Summer of Mars. It contains a song entitled The Summer of Mars.
Now, the reason we called our song Summer of Mars, Deuxieme Tableau, is that it is based on a riff which is extremely similar to one in The Summer of Mars/Vera Cruise song of the same name. I felt at liberty to reconfigure said riff because it was written by me. The difference between the two riffs is
- The Vera Cruise one is in 4/4 time and goes danananananana(rest), danananananana(rest) on one note (B)
- while ours is in 3/4 time and goes danananana(rest), danananana(rest) on the same (B) note.
The "Deuxieme tableau" part of the title is a reference to the band Faust, of whom the members of The Love Substitutes are all fans (well, at least Mauro and I). They had a song on their second album, So Far, called Picnic On A Frozen River, which they revisited on their 4th album, Faust IV, wherein it was titled Picnic on a Frozen River, Deuxieme Tableau.
So now, when the Summer of Mars' eponymously titled debut album is (finally) released, and you all rush out and buy it, you have no excuse to go thinking they ripped us off (or vice versa). They got there first and we borrowed it, with permission.

I'll sleep better now.

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

Yesterday, Tuesday 14th, the Love Subs recorded a radio session for Studio Brussel, to be broadcast Thursday evening. We did versions of Summer of Mars, Lester Bangs, Hey Did You See Me Coming and Death Folk Sailor. We asked for the latter not to be broadcast because the singing was well ropey. Mauro and I both had heavy colds. He was fried on some surrogate prescription medicine. We were fairly crammed into a tiny little studio, which I recall recording a session for another band in (to my dismay, 10 years ago).

Rudy shared a few upcoming dates with me:

January 8th: Zaal België, Hasselt
January 15th: Jeugdhuis Jokot, Niel
January 20th: Charlatan, Ghent
January 29th: De Nachten, Antwerp
February 4th: Cafe Den Bosch, Arnhem
February 5th: Recyclart, Brussels

Some keywords circulating in the rumour mill at the moment:

The Wedding Present, Damo Suzuki, Domino, London, Prague.

We're out of action for the next while - Mauro's really busy until early January, and I'm still trying to find a job. It'll be soon, I'm sure.

Monday, December 13, 2004

Spent the entire day looking for jobs. Most productive. Found an excellent website. Knackered now though. Undertook a small Dutch language evaluation at an Interim this morning and, apparently, I'm at higher intermediate level, which sounds OK to me.

I must call Mauro about getting to Brussels tomorrow for this radio session malarkey.

Sunday, December 12, 2004

First two gigs down then. The first, Wonder Bar, Antwerp, on Friday night wasn't so clever. Terrible sound. And it's hard to improvise when you can't hear each other. Never did like playing in Antwerp, for some reason.

The second, at De Molens in Leuven, was much more like it. Broke a couple of strings like in the olden days. People seemed to really dig it. Excellent, charming little venue. We even sold a few CDs.

Both nights we've randomly got a drummer up from out of the audience to play on Meet The Love Substitutes. Worked well both times. Think it might become a regular feature. Tried the quiet delay-loop version of More Than The Sun in Leuven for the first time. Very well received.

Farcical postscript: Martine and I had driven almost all the way back to Antwerp when Rudy called to ask if I had his keys. He couldn't get in his car. Why the hell would I have your keys? thought I. But, of course, I did. I had borrowed them to get a couple of extra pedals from the Trouvématic before the gig, then promptly forgot they were in my pocket. I scanned my brain for some simple solution, but none was forthcoming, so we turned around and drove all the way back to Leuven, in order to drive all the way back to Antwerp. So much for an early night.

Next activity - a radio session for Radio Een or Studio Brussel or something, Tuesday evening.

Friday, December 10, 2004

Final preparations for gig number 1. Still learning how to sing Open and play it at the same time. Still working out the best pedal configuration. Q-Tron still missing, (though Big Muff mercifully returned, by the grace of Jackson Solanaz). Solanaz couldn't find it at CJ's. I think Barry might have it. One day when we're talking again I'll get it back. Will borrow Mauro's purple beast of not-quite-as-good-as-Q-Tron-ness. And his tuner. Wish us luck.

Thursday, December 09, 2004

Found my guitar.

Spent the first part of the day in search of missing pedals and missing Mauro. Then moved on to buying cheap necessities of the electrical kind. Low-tech self sufficient live performance, welcome back. You have been sadly missed. Strange request from Rudy in the evening re Aarich and synching of a film soundtrack. Will know more tomorrow. Starting to get the feeling that tomorrow's show will be busy as bejaysus, which kind of isn't what we had in mind, but what the feck. Maybe we can talk them into paying us.

Still haven't figured out how to play Open and sing it at the same time.

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

So, the Subs are about ready to spring into action as a functioning live-performance band, having lain dormant since work on "Meet The Love Substitutes While The House Is On Fire" was completed. True to form and tradition two rehearsals sufficed as preparation for the first two shows - being Antwerp on Friday and Leuven on Saturday. I don't want to tempt fate so I won't. Death Folk Sailor is the problem child, but love shall break down the barriers of internicine disharmony as ever, have no doubt.

I must find my guitar.