A well overdue update on how things are going in the studio:
Very well, thank you very much.
It’s mad to think we’re recording our fifth album. 6 years ago we went to Toronto to make number one, ‘Hold On Now, Youngster…’, in what was, with hindsight, quite an ordeal, and now we find ourselves in equally glamorous Bethesda, North Wales, making number 5.
Bethesda is the perfect location for us to be recording. We prefer to record somewhere reasonably isolated, and where we can stay onsite. The nature of the way we record means there will inevitably be days where you have no recording duties to carry out, but it’s nice to still be ever so close to the studio, so you can constantly pop your head into the control room to see what’s going on. The studio is located about a 10 minute walk from the highstreet, so daily strolls there are a must. Bethesda is a quiet, working class, Welsh-speaking town and I’ve really taken to it. Good, honest people and decent pubs.
We’ve 10 more days of recording, and I feel like we’re keeping to schedule better than we ever have before. Usually we find ourselves scrambling and panicking the last couple of days, but there’s no reason that should be the case this time. That’ll mean we’ve more time to work on the final flourishes of songs. Backing vocals, percussion and any other frivolities that might spring to mind. With ‘Hello Sadness’ I recall us finishing off group vocals as we were loading the van ready to leave. No need for that this time.
Personally, this is the most I’ve enjoyed any recording experience. Obviously it helps that the Confederations Cup and Big Brother have started now, and we’ve had Britain’s Got Talent and The Voice too, but the whole living arrangement and the atmosphere within the band has been conducive to great times. I’ve nearly finished writing lyrics for all the songs too. I never start writing before we’re in the studio, because I feel like a phoney if I’m creating ‘art’ under any motivation other than time pressure. I know that’s not ideal. But the songs are really fucking strong, and sounding huge, and it’s been an absolute pleasure to write for them.
I’d like nothing more than to list off songtitles, as that’s the sort of thing that makes this seem REAL, but we need to drip-feed this stuff, so here’s a couple of acronyms for the time being, of songs that I’ve already recorded the vocals for and are near completion - ‘TTBTLT’ & ‘A, B’.
Los Campesinos! | (All’s Well That Ends) In Medias Resyou know I’d sooner go down in a ball of flames
than I would lay here and be bored to death
all’s well that ends
After 6 years of playing on stage together, with over 450 shows notched into our collective bedposts and 1 previous (failed) attempt at a live recording in Seattle, ‘A Good Night For A Fistfight’ becomes our (Los Campesinos!) first official Live Album.
On December 15th, 2012 at Islington Assembly Hall, London, we played a 21-song set in front of a sold-out crowd of 800 people to both celebrate our time with and mourn the departure of Ellen Campesinos! as a member. It also marked the first time we were joined onstage by Aleks Campesinos! since her departure from the band to return to her studies, 3 years ago.
Peppered with charming mistakes onstage and unfunny heckles from a dangerously drunken crowd, the recording is an unedited 91-minute (!) document of a set that draws upon songs from all 4 of our studio albums and beyond, making up the closest we are ever likely to get to a ‘Greatest Hits’.
‘A Good Night For A Fistfight’ appears in the form of 21 downloadable 320kbps MP3s and is available for pre-order, for just a fiver, NOW at loscampesinos.bigcartel.com (alongside a variety of new Los Camp! ephemera).
As a tiny taster of that night, we’re making ‘We Are Beautiful, We Are Doomed’ available to download FOR FREE, while anyone who pre-orders will immediately receive a download of ‘Baby I Got The Death Rattle’ (the final song of the ‘set-proper’ from that night) also.
Following this release, we’ll be headed into the studio this June to record our 5th studio album.
Missing Rob Campesinos! but I couldn’t wait any longer to post this photoset.
LET’S GET THIS SHOW BACK ON THE ROAD /// /// NEWS TRICKLING SOON
After like a million albums released last year, I didn’t think there would be very many this year but I sure was wrong. Now that the series of wacko experiments and shenanigans by The Flaming Lips is over with and is out of Wayne Coyne’s system, I’m so ready for him and the band to prove me wrong with The Terror, which is supposed to be more Steven Drozd driven and apparently the band’s favorite since The Soft Bulletin. Amok, The debut album of Thom Yorke’s supergroup Atoms for Peace, is bound to be great, especially after listening to “Default” like 25 times the day it was released. Also, Thom Yorke saying they made “a record where you weren’t quite sure where the human starts and the machine ends” sounds pretty interesting. Arcade Fire’s new album is definitely something I’m anticipating, and with James Murphy being involved this time, that makes it even more exciting. MGMT was supposed to release a new one in 2012 that didn’t happen, but that will finally happen this year. They just started using their Twitter and said that they’re doing something really exciting right now and posted a picture of a cat saying that it just listened to new MGMT songs, and I’m hoping that means there will finally be some word on the new album soon. Los Campesinos! are starting their new album in the beginning of this year. Since they get so much better with each album, and since everything they release, whether on an album or some leftover non-album song, is always so consistently good, this will of course be one of my most anticipated. Explosions in the Sky’s score for the movie Prince Avalanche is coming out this year. Lights & Motion’s (previously Aerials until three months ago) debut album Reanimation was supposed to be released in 2012, but that’s been pushed back to tomorrow. I’ve been following the growth of this guy’s project since near the beginning, and I’m excited for the finished product because the songs I’ve heard are amazing. Last I read, a lot of Owen Pallett’s In Conflict is finished so there’s that. Beck has not one, but two albums pretty much ready to go, and neither of them are just unrecorded sheet music! One that was started in 2008, and another that was recorded in 2011 so hopefully one of those is released this year. The first My Bloody Valentine since 1991 that has been teased again and again for years but never happened was supposed to finally be released by the end of 2012, but didn’t happen, but it is finished so I assume that will happen this year. If the new Modest Mouse album finally comes out, that would be nice. Also anticipating new albums by Kate Nash which she has “absolutely poured my heart, soul, brain, guts, and mind” into, possibly The National who are working on new songs, the debut album by The World is a Beautiful Place & I am No Longer Afraid to Die, the next one by Tokyo Police Club, Vampire Weekend, Frightened Rabbit, Phoenix, and I’m enjoying the songs from the new Local Natives album.