New EP: Like Snowflakes

sunny-intervals-like-snowflakes

I’ve released a new winter EP, with six hushed piano songs, all recorded at home. The songs are:

1. Like Snowflakes
2. Christmas In Your Sights
3. Winter Sun Origami
4. Everywhere, Clouds!
5. New Year’s Day
6. Draw The Curtains

It’s available as a free / pay-what-you-like digital download from: www.sunnyintervals.bandcamp.com

Earlier this year I released an upbeat, summer album called ‘Sunrise’, with soft harmonies, acoustic guitars, pianos, flutes, trumpets and more. It’s also available to stream and download free on Bandcamp:

And at the start of 2016, I released a Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci cover as part of a compilation album released  on Recordiau Prin.

It’s been a busy year – hope you enjoy all the songs!

 

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Posted in album, Free indiepop downloads, Free indiepop MP3 downloads

A Very Cherry Christmas – Volume 11

I’m very happy to have contributed a new Sunny Intervals song, ‘Like Snowflakes’, to Cherryade Records’ ‘A Very Cherry Christmas – Volume 11’ compilation album.

It’s available now as a limited edition CD from the Cherryade Records Bandcamp page.

There’s some fantastic artists on there, including Nervous Twitch, Red Sleeping Beauty, Elizabeth Morris from Allo Darlin’, The Just Joans, Deerful and The Yellow Melodies. My contribution is a gentle winter piano song, which might become part of a downloadable EP eventually. In the meantime, it’s only available through this Cherryade album.

I hope you enjoy it! The full tracklisting is:

1. Nervous Twitch – You Ruined Christmas
2. The Just Joans – Your Turkey Doesn’t Taste Right
3. Niagara Balls (feat Matt Moskal) – Don’t Be A Dick At Christmas
4. Family Selection Box – Everyday Feels Like Christmas (When You Celebrate Christmas Everyday)
5. Elizabeth Morris – The Season
6. Deerful – City Bells
7. Rainbow Reservoir – Christmas In Istanbul
8. Entre-Knobs – Xmas Not So Much
9. The Gin Birkins – Christmas Time Is Here Again (Ah Bumhug!)
10. Red Sleeping Beauty – Merry Christmas, Marie
11. The Yellow Melodies – Happy Birthday, Merry Christmas
12. Thumper – Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)
13. Building Rockets – Snow Song
14. Sunny Intervals – Like Snowflakes
15. David Craigie – Running In The Snow With You
16. The South London Lo-Fi Explosion – Climate Change Christmas
17. Council Tax Band – O Tannenbaum
18. Luke & Chelsea – Oh Yeah, It’s Christmastime!
19. Alex And The Christopher Hale Band – Merry Xmas (Work Is Over)
20. Partly Llama – Switch The Lights Back On
21. AirStripOne – The Last Christmas On Earth

Posted in Compilations and podcasts, indiepop compilations

Sunrise: a track-by-track guide

This summer I’m releasing a new album called Sunrise. It’s an album of soft harmonies, acoustic guitars, pianos, flutes and trumpets. That’s not really much of a description though, so I thought I’d put together a short track-by-track guide…


1. Clouds Breaking
One of my favourite albums is ‘Hello Wave’ by Sweet Baboo, and I particlarly love the light instrumentals and long intros to some of the songs. As I wanted to make a light summer album, I thought I’d follow that sort of approach, rather than just have 10 consecutive songs with dense lyrics. I like to think that when the trumpets and flutes join half-way through it sounds a bit like sunshine breaking through clouds. I think Gorky’s ‘The Blue Trees’ does this effect much better though, with completely different instruments.

2. In The Hallway
The first song written for the album, and it took absolutely forever to finish! It’s about playing music with whichever instruments are lying around at the time, so it’s potentially a Sunny Intervals lo-fi manifesto! With the samba drums in the middle it sounds a little bit like a lo-fi spin on’I Got The Answer’ by The Magic Theatre. Anyway, it has three verses, three choruses, an extended middle section and still comes in at less than three minutes!

3. Coastal Blue
When the album was nearly finished, I felt it needed another fun, upbeat song early on. This is essentially me listing the Homebase or Dulux colour catalogue, except only colours they don’t have a copyright on, just in case they come after me. I really thought I could make the piano and floor tom drums intro sound as cool and daunting as ‘Lonely For You’ by Sam Dees, but inevitably it came out  lo-fi and less stirring. It’s harder than it looks!

4. Say It First
I was trying to write a light summer album, and this is one of the most explicitly summery songs lyrically. It marks the first appearance in a song of my new cat, and is easily 45 seconds longer than it needs to be. I think the ending’s quite nice if you make it that far!

5. Chaffinches
Another song that took ages to finish – it started as an upbeat, foot-tapper and ended up as a sad ballad. I realised once finished that it shares an unusual chord change with a very famous and possibly unfashionable 70s  rock song, and it reminds me of being on holiday in Lisbon. To lighten it up, I’ve sprinkled it with bleepy noises from a £10 Casio keyboard.

6. The Hills
From a sad piano ballad to a sprawling, dischordant, time signature changing cacophany – backwards guitars, post-apocolyptic flutes, cowbells – it’s not for the faint-hearted! That’s an exaggeration of course, but there is a prominent pun in the chorus that could divide opinion. It might sound like a very lo-fi take on Friendly Fires.

7. Light Clouds
An instrumental break! Essentially a shorter version of the first song but with more pianos and flutes, and fewer acoustic guitars. Possibly my favourite track on the album, and used for this short trailer video.

8. Twenty-four Hours
One of the more conventional indiepop songs on the album, and another explicitly summer-themed song. Not the summer of happy festivals and beach holidays that you’ll see in the adverts though, but more of the summer of missed opportunities sitting in work/college/public transport while summer rushes past too quickly. I wanted to start with some ‘Proof of Youth’ Go! Team style trumpets, but as always, it came out sounding nowhere like that in the end. This is another song that should easily have been 45 seconds shorter.

9. A Leaf Falling In Summer
I thought I’d write a really sad, minor key piano song. I might make all of the next record a totally piano album – it’ll be so much quicker and easier to record!

10. South Carolina
At the time I wrote this, it was the USA presidential primaries. I thought it would make a nice aide-memiore to write a song listing all the states that the parties’ nominees visit in the correct order. So starting in Iowa, then New Hampshire etc, with an anecdote for each state. As it turned out there were far too many states, I couldn’t make Vermont scan and the song doesn’t really help me remember the correct order. And I don’t even win the nomination…

11. Dancing
A new recording of quite an old Sunny Intervals song. I love music but don’t always like dancing, and this song explains how that feels sometimes. Another outing for the trumpets!

12. Clouds
The extended version of the two earlier songs with ‘Clouds’ in their name. Reminds me a bit of the Lemon Jelly song they use at the end of the second series of Spaced. And ending, as the album began, with some classic birdsong recordings.

Well done and thanks very much for reading this far!

I hope you enjoy the songs. The album’s available to download free or on cassette here:
Sunny Intervals – Sunrise 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in album, DIY pop, Free indiepop downloads, Free indiepop MP3 downloads, indiepop, Uncategorized

New album: Sunrise

I’ve released a new collection of Sunny Intervals songs today called ‘Sunrise’. It’s available on limited edition cassette, t-shirt and free / pay-what-you-like download from:
Sunny Intervals on Bandcamp

Sunny Intervals Sunrise 18 June outline

There’s a dozen tracks about the summer, with soft harmonies, acoustic guitars, pianos, flutes, trumpets and more. It’s taken a couple of years to put together, and will be available on iTunes and Spotify etc. from July. The tracklisting is:

1. Clouds Breaking
2. In The Hallway (lyrics)
3. Coastal Blue (lyrics)
4. Say It First (lyrics)
5. Chaffinches (lyrics)
6. The Hills (lyrics)
7. Light Clouds
8. Twenty-four Hours (lyrics)
9. A Leaf Falling In Summer (lyrics)
10. South Carolina (lyrics)
11. Dancing (lyrics)
12. Clouds (lyrics)


Here’s a picture of the cassettes – hope you enjoy the songs!

Sunrise cassettes

Posted in album, Free indiepop downloads, Free indiepop MP3 downloads, indiepop, indiepop cassette,, lo-fi

Iechyd Da – A Tribute to Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci

Gorkys cover

I’m so excited to have contributed a song to this new Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci compilation, as released on Recordiau Prin last week.

I love Gorky’s and could very easily have missed out on them altogether. I’m possibly part of the Patio Song generation, having missed out on the early Ankst years, and my earliest Gorky’s memory is hearing them played on the BBC Radio 1 breakfast show, back in the days when Mark Radcliffe and Mark Riley were allowed to have such a prominent slot. I think they were single of the week, and I’m sure every other Gorky’s fan can tell a far cooler story about how they came across the band! Although they were then finally on my radar, I went through a series of Gorky’s near misses in 1997: I was late for their Glastonbury slot due to heavy mud, chose to buy a Bis album rather than Barafundle in a moment of indecisiveness in Our Price, and went to see 60ft Dolls rather than Gorky’s at the Astoria  2 in London because it was marginally cheaper. Something kept drawing me back though, and from 1998 I was properly hooked and making up for lost time! Even so, I still managed to miss a classic show at the Union Chapel in 2000 and later had a signed Poodle Rockin’ CD stolen during a flat break-in. Despite these near misses, my wife and I chose a Gorky’s song for our first wedding dance and I think I’ve seen Gorky’s or Euros Childs play live more than any other band. I don’t think I’ll ever see them play again, so this compilation is a great chance to hear their songs afresh.

It’s an amazing album, and a real accomplishment for Ash from Pulco, who’s put the whole thing together brilliantly. There’s such a variation, firstly in terms of song choices – ranging from the earliest Ankst records to songs from their final album. And it’s not just the hits, but a combination of singles, album songs, B-sides and more. There’s also a huge variation in style – from beautiful acoustic versions of Catrin (The Gentle Good) and No One Looked Around (Tremolo Ghosts), to the synth-pop joy of Honeymoon With You (Sweeney Straddles The Sun) and the fuzzy glam stomp of Sweet Johnny (Helicopter Spies). I also love Oh Peas! incredible take on Lucy’s Hamper, the stirring Patio Song from Seazoo and Stuart Kidd’s excellent If Fingers Were Xylophones.

The whole thing is ace though, and I’m so pleased I took part. I covered This Summer’s Been Good From The Start and tried to make it as upbeat as possible. There’s 32 songs in total, and the whole album’s free to download or stream at Recordiau Prin on Bandcamp.

I’ll release some more of my own songs shortly. In the meantime, enjoy the compilation!

Posted in Compilations and podcasts, DIY pop, Free indiepop downloads, Free indiepop MP3 downloads, indiepop compilations

A Very Cherry Christmas Volume 10

A Very Cherry Christmas 10

The Sunny Intervals song ‘Christmas In Your Sights’ is included on the new festive compilation from Cherryade Records. It sits alongside songs from Los Campesinos!, The Thyme Machine, The Very Most, The Swapsies, Jack Hayter, Simon Love and many others.

This is the tenth volume of the annual compilation, with previous artists including Allo Darlin’, John Shuttleworth, The Lovely Eggs, The School, The Bobby McGee’s and loads more.

The album is available on limited edition CD from the Cherryade Records website.

Posted in Compilations and podcasts, indiepop, indiepop compilations | Tagged , , ,

EardrumsPop: Between Two Waves compilation

In spring 2014, the EardrumsPop label invited bands to collaborate for the next instalments in their free Between Two Waves series of compilations.

I’ve remixed The Understudies and A Little Orchestra on ‘If I Come To You’ for this compilation series. The song originally appears on The Understudies album ‘Let Desire Guide Your Hand’, and this collaboration is released under the name The Orchestrals of Normandy, which may make sense if you have The Understudies album!

Between Two Waves is a free download series, and features loads of ace bands, including Darren Hayman, This Many Boyfriends, Onward Chariots, Ralegh Long, Lisa Bouvier, The Very Most and loads more.

Posted in Compilations and podcasts, Free indiepop downloads, Free indiepop MP3 downloads, indiepop compilations