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September 19th, 2011

As founder member of Sparks, and one of the producers of Concrete Blonde‘s classic album Bloodletting, Earle Mankey is an LA underground legend. Steven Severin (Siouxsie and the Banshees) is a fan of his, so it worked out very nicely that I brought a 2″ tape to Earle’s studio today to transfer onto digital files for easier listening.

The 2″ tape was recorded in 2004 at Toerag Studios in London, where The White Stripes recorded Elephant, and where I recorded two songs with Steven Severin on guitar and Amina Bates (Scanners) on guitar. The songs are called ‘Special Things‘ and ‘The Highest Mountain‘.

Also on the tape are two early versions of ‘Rum Cove‘, which I since developed with Alain Whyte and David J. It’s primed to be recorded by the three of us at Coldwater Studio.

The session today at Earle’s studio was strange, as I’d not heard these great recordings for 8 years. My voice has changed, unsurprisingly, especially in the delivery. I was more forthright back in London, more punk rock. The songs have matured well, they’re mellifluous now.

It was a pleasure to be able to work with Earle to salvage the band’s instrumental performances ready to rerecord my vocals sometime soon.