Friday, January 28, 2011

Pure Television

I recently acquired the technology to convert humble audio cassette recordings into MP3 format and I’ve managed to dig out a few recordings of my band, Pure Television, from the 1990s. You can listen to them at this page – at the moment there are six songs, but I will upload more as I track them down. I'll also try to post more lyrics (only lyrics to 'Bicycle Balladry' are currently up there), which I confess are all mine.

The songs were recorded on an 8-track portostudio in the bedroom of my house. We recorded them live, rather than by individual instrument, to preserve the energy of the moment. I think we just about succeeded in that, but we also didn’t bother to eradicate mistakes, of which there are many. So, it’s about as un-slick as is possible to imagine.

Our first gig was at a party. We had been playing our instruments for exactly four days. We played three songs, all of them total chaos – including a cover of Joy Division’s ’24 Hours’. In fact, I don’t think we even bothered to tune up beforehand. Audience members amused themselves by trying to pull the leads out of our amps, while we raced around putting them back in again.

We did get better, although how much better is a matter of debate. The band never achieved much success, but we did play a number of gigs around Glasgow and Edinburgh with some people who did go on to achieve considerable fame and fortune. At one gig, most members of Belle & Sebastian were in the audience, although they’ve probably erased this from their collective memory by now.

If you like lo-fi, warped jangly pop, you might find something to enjoy. I am unaccountably glad I’m now able to preserve those digitally in any case.

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