All Hands Lost
If you’re a progressive rock band, sooner or later you are going to write a song that is longer than three minutes. If you’re any kind of musician at all, you’re gonna get curious about the possibility of introducing bigger themes, extended arrangements, recurring melodies, counter melodies, odd time signatures and loads and loads of that heinous, anti pop device; dynamic. Having said that, we are not in the market for producing a Topographic Oceans every five minutes (why reinvent the wheel?) so I wouldn’t hold your breath for a 60 minute Tinyfish epic any time soon.
There; I’ve said it.
We like the opportunity to stride boldly over certain musical lines drawn in the sand however and in today’s climate of uber-epics, a twelve minute song seems a perfectly sensible length of time to us.
The guitar intro to this track also features one of the few surviving parts of our original demo laid down in my old studio, way back in early 2005. It was just Jim and I riffing off each other and I was really keen to see it included. It isn’t the best recording quality in the world but it has a really gritty feel to it, and, try as we might, we couldn’t reproduce it later on with the same feel. I’m glad it’s still in there and I smile every time I hear it (I can even remember the smell of the tea in our cups as they sat next to us on the table while we played).
This also features the one moment on the album where Rob actually plays a musical instrument (harmonica). Back in the day when we used to play the acoustic open mic clubs of London, Rob was always there on stage with us playing his heart out. Sadly, there was less opportunity to ‘blow the blues’ (and I don’t mean a romantic liaison with Chelsea FC) on this album but I’d like to include more of his harp work next time around.
By the way, listen out for the end section and see if you can spot Rob talking in an outrageous French accent (‘the fares are not cheap, but the view is marvellous!’).
I usually write stuff when something affects me so much that I can no longer keep quiet about it. So, rather than rant at my friends, I go straight to the “Simon Godfrey Music Therapy Shed” behind Woolworths’ and scrawl it all down, and later, lo and behold, it comes out as something like this: a jolly twelve minutes worth of song about how the human world will end.
And as for my excellent Monty Python French accent, I'm afraid that my hearing is shot to pieces, so I can't hear it myself - but it is in there somewhere...