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I've done about half of them so far, and it's been ILLUMINATING. When I moved house a lot of my copies of this stuff either went in the bin or to my parents' house, so I had to borrow them back from Tom. Many of them hadn't been heard by ME since i recorded them 2-3 years ago, thus i had FORGOTTEN what they sounded like. In some cases this was nice, as my demo sounded either DEAD GOOD, or Interestingly Different - "Post Subsonic Bass", for instance, has only about half the same words and a different tune altogether. I LOVE this sort of thing, it all comes from being a Beatles Nut and finding pleasure in all those crackly old tapes you used to be able to buy at record fairs before Anthology came out. "Merchant Ivory Punks" has a VERY different vibe too, if I can I'll stick it up here on the website as an EXAMPLE.
Some surprises were altogether LESS pleasant, however. My version of "Back Of The Sofa", for instance, is APPALLING, and some of the songs we didn't record are just CRAP. One song, "Following A Star" is too painful to listen to all the way through, and yet I remember at the time thinking it was the best thing ever, and spending AGES upstairs in the attic recording it on the four-track. Last night i was HUMBLED to hear it again, and remember with shame how AMAZED i was that the Validators didn't want to try it out as a band - frankly, after hearing some of that stuff, i am AMAZED that they even wanted to BE in a band with me, and thus I offer my sincerest gratitude to them for Sticking With It. There's a song called "Forgiveness Is A Cuckoo" which I haven't re-listened to yet, but which Rob still brings up as the absolute NADIR of my efforts - having heard the standard of material that he was POLITE about, i dread to think how awful it's going to be.
So yes, THANKS to Tim, Emma, Tom and Rob today i think, and also Kev - he doesn't have to listen to the demo tapes, but he DOES have to listen to me trying to sing - and (Local Radio AHOY!) that, gentle reader, is the topic of today's addition to the Annotations section. Oh yeah!
posted 10/4/2003 by MJ Hibbett
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