The album launch was on April 7th at the Electric Circus. How was it?
“Fabulous! Loved it. Fantastic support from Megan D (very talented singer songwriter, only 16 and this was her first ever live gig), and the wonderful Capitals, who are always great. I really enjoyed the gig. We had cupcakes with plum jam in the centre, butterfly fairy cakes & rum & plum cocktails.”
What are the plans from here?
“…Gig as much as possible, shoot more music videos, gain more exposure?”
I loved the ordering of the song titles from the bottom up on the cd case; a nice little touch. Whose idea was that?
“Thank you, my idea. It was embedded within the concept to start at the bottom & work up.”
I’ve glimpsed at some of the early press. How pleased are you with it?
“I’m really chuffed with the reviews, they have been absolutely incredible. The concept & the emotional story has been well received. I always intended this project to be meaningful, at least to me, so I’m glad the press have been picking up on that side of it, as well as the production.”
Was just re-watching the video for the ‘Seed’, can you share anything about how that came together. The results are very good.
“Well, the idea came about from discussions between myself & Jim Wolff of LEITH Records. I wanted a stop-frame music video…we discussed options, costs, possible ideas, we wanted to use leads as roots/plants. Then Jim got Greg Hoyna involved (who is a cardboard stop-frame master) and he said I had to be in the video. No question. We had a disagreement about the ending. The consensus was originally to throw the plant pot out of the window & have a happy ending (it was just a dream kind of thing), but that missed the entire point of the album. Then Jim came up with the idea of me being plugged in at the end & I loved it! It took 75m of cardboard, 3 weeks of preparation (turning my livingroom into cardboard), and 2 long days to shoot with LEITH Records & Greg directing.”
Incidentally, who came up with the design for the Plum logo? It is such an excellent icon.
“I worked with The LEITH Agency on the brand identity, and the man behind the brand identity including the logo was the young & talented Mr Sam Grosset.”
A while ago you made a promotional trip to London handing out fairy dust and other things. Do you have a tale or 2 of some of the encounters this lead to?
“…I didn’t actually hand out any fairy dust in London, lol. I gave away 50 promo copies of the album. I met some lovely people. I also went to the Gotye concert at Shepherds Bush Empire & gave Wally de Backer one of my music boxes. He says he might use it to write a song 🙂 his dad gave him one that plays the Can Can which sounds amazing.”
I wanted to purchase a copy of the album for someone in North America, but the web shop informed that this was not possible. Will this change in the future?
“Yes. I’m really keen to get the music to the states & Canada & everywhere else. It was a problem with my settings in Big Cartel. Fixed now.”
I’ve been trying to follow up on people’s recommendations. I have to admit that I have not been doing a very good job of it. This morning I noticed you linked a Capitals song on your facebook page. Until today, it was a band name rolling around my head. After watching ‘Ode to End’ I became very intrigued. That video led me to ‘Hello World’ and they’ve instantly become the next band I want to seek out. What more can you tell us about them?
“Keir MacCulloch from Capitals helped produce my album. He is a world class producer & was also signed to Benbecula Records under the name Araya. Angus Carbarns, the singer is a fantastically talented songwriter, who used to play with The Cinematics. Both from Inverness in the Scottish Highlands. They are brilliant & I wish them every success.”
I noticed that, at the moment, you and I and 292 other people’ like’ the Gothenburg Address. What is wrong with the world?
“Luke Joyce is a friend of mine who is always doing really interesting projects including surround sound gigs etc. he also writes music under the name I Build Collapsible Mountains. He’s another very talented songwriter.
…I’m not sure what’s wrong with the world. Perhaps not enough people like yourself willing to listen to & promote genuinely good music.”
It is rather nice to see one’s name on the inside flap of the finished product along with all the other sponsors. It has been an enjoyable experience seeing this project come to fruition. When the press kit files came I gave them a listen in the car a few times but my download must have had some corruption. At the time I was also asked to write a review. Since then I’ve pretty much decided that not only do I not want to write ‘traditional’ reviews but that I really can’t. The world would be a better place if I didn’t. Even worse, I was not really sure if I would have been able to recommend it.
When the physical album arrived I dutifully put it into the stereo proper. After one listen my reaction was of astonishment – I didn’t remember it being so good. ‘Electronica’ for lack of a better label – and it really only speaks to instrumentation on this record not its heart – is not my neck of the woods. I still have not listened enough to fully absorb the lyrics and still marvel at the little touches that I discover every time I listen to it. I’ve walked around outside, up and down the hills, with it playing in my ears and it is becoming one of my favourite records. This is obviously an exceptional example, but I truly love how ‘my’ music is becoming more personal again.