Calum Malcolm was at the studio yesterday dropping off listening material for the ‘Suits’ and ‘Songs from the Mirror’ remasters. Disc 1 of the 2 titles, the original albums’ have still to be remastered but ‘Suits’ disc 2, the demos, and 3 the live versions are finished as is ‘SFTM’ disc 2 a mixture of demos and live material.
David Barras has edited the DVD for ‘SFTM’ disc 3 and I will be getting the finished version on Monday which will be going for mastering as a DVD 9 on Wednesday. It’s turned into quite a collection with a 90 minute interview, the ‘Hold Your Head Up’ promo video, ‘Solo’ with Fairport Convention from Cropredy 2015 and ‘Fearless’, Boston Tea Party’, Jeepster’, Hold Your Head Up’ and 5 years from the Vredenburg show in Utrecht in 1993.
The Dutch material is pretty rough, “bouncy” and grainy as it was shot on 2 Hi 8 cameras, one static and one “wild”, but as the only surviving footage from the main tour in Spring 93 it’s a souvenir rather than broadcast quality. David has replaced the camera soundtrack with the ‘Sushi’ versions as coincidentally it was the same show I released on the Dick Bros label in 94 as the first of the ‘official bootlegs’, now long since deleted.
The artwork is already in production and all the discs will be with the manufacturer next week.I’ve been told that we could have both finished remastered albums by mid November.
The T shirt and seat shirt designs are now with the printers and again we hope to have them in stock on the mail order service at the same time.
Rob Skarin ( who put together Steven Wilson’s web site among others) is confident we will have that up and running by the end of October and it will launch with the first section of the on stage interview I did with Steve Blacknell in Islington in September.
Steve Vantsis and Robin Boult were up last weekend and we worked on all the keys for the December set list and tinkered with new songs for ‘Weltschmerz’. There are some great ideas around but as I said before it’s highly unlikely I will have new material to play on the tour. That’s slightly disappointing but I know the wait will be worth it and the set list is pretty powerful without their inclusion.
The only downer at the moment is that my back has ‘gone wrong’ and I’m suffering from dreadful sciatica which makes walking and standing really painful.( one of the reasons I wasn’t at Hampden last night) I’m seeing my specialist again and had another MRI scan on my spine last Friday. I’m still waiting on the diagnosis but the specialist hopes I won’t need invasive surgery and if it comes down to it I will get steroid injections to get me through the 11 shows in December.I had them on the ‘Childhood’ tour and they gave me relief and mobility but it’s a short term fix and I’ll have to deal with the problem next year.
A wee piece of silver lining was that I’d noticed the last time I had an MRI scan that the machine had some interesting sounds and rhythms. The operator advised against taking my phone in to record them due to the magnets but pointed me at some clips on You Tube. I came back and told Steve and Robin and we listened to the samples which they thought could be interesting.
A couple of days later Robin came up with a wonderful riff on the acoustic guitar and I had the idea to see if the scanner samples worked as a complete juxtaposition to the feel of the riff. It was quite uncanny as not only did the underlying rhythms of the scanner match the pulse of the riff but the sounds were in exactly the same key. It was meant to be! 🙂