Tag Archives: Maciek Frett

Kevlar Kev, Enzosonbenzos, and Beryls In Peril…

Work is now firmly underway for next Sieben album 2020 Vision. I am firmly engrossed (if not obsessed) by it, with tunnel vision for it in any free time I have.

I’m aiming for 2020 Vision to be released in September 2020, ready for my tour support with Goethes Erben, and other gigs and festivals. Those of you signed up to my mailing list will be offered copies before that, of course, as usual 😉

So far the following tracks are ‘about finished’:

Kevlar Kev  –  or “Kev, we’re All Fucked” – I’m still undecided on the track name for this album opener. It also includes me talking my way into the start of the album for the first time ever – and a talking violin called Kev! Possibly the daftest (and fastest) Sieben song to date, out of all my albums. At the end Kev shouts “Maciek time!” and all hell will break loose with a synth solo from my friend (and fellow 7JK-er) Maciek Frett.

The Darkness You Have Drawn – almost finished, though I have written the bass line three times now, mixing it each time, and being unsatisfied. And think that string top line will have to be replaced, when I get home tonight. Definitely a full-throttle one on the album.

Enzosonbenzos – the first track I wrote for the album, and now definitely feeling like the crummiest mix, currently, despite my best efforts. And I’ve mixed it 8 times already. Hey ho, will get there. That’s how these things work. I’ve surpassed it with other songs, and learnt stuff along the way that will feed back into this one.  Got a good groove to it, bedded into a 6/4 beat. And this track (and this album) has become quite focussed on two-bar simple bass lines that roll round and hold firm while the music moves from under them.

Shirt Of The Apocalypse – A Sieben track with swing to it, finally 😉 Featuring the beautiful vocal talents of Conor Nutt, (he of Winston Macabre and other projects) singing, and contributing some fabulous words to this track. Perhaps the mellowest track on the album, by a long way. And an absolute pleasure to have Conor on this track- I love the ‘powder and glistening’ nature of his voice, and the thoughtful nature of his lyrics.

Beryls In Peril – A track that starts quite dubbily, and then bursts out. It has the new dissonant, atonal, elements I’m after in the ‘top lines’ of this album. I always push to break new ground of my own, with each release. Even more so with 2020 Vision, as with Crumbs, breaking the mould of what I ‘usually’ do. Where Crumbs tried to reason with the world, 2020 Vision tells it to take a hike, and raises a mocking, comic finger to the greed and ignorance that is pulling our world and species into extinction.

Reckoning Beckoning – a re-work of Hellfires track Anubis- Director Of Weights. (1999). I used this to set the production style and tone for 2020 Vision. (Because I don’t have to think about the writing and arrangement of the piece). This is somewhat souped up from the original, and (like the rest of this album) much more grounded in the bass and beats than previous Sieben works – mainly because I can, Kev the Kevlar five-string violin has massively influenced the sounds I can get now. The beats are sounding more electronic and compact, in a great way. Earlier albums of mine are also very much heavier in their use of top lines and intertwining violin melodies than this one. And Reckoning Beckoning gets this treatment, with an added ‘stutter’ effect I’m using, that sounds very ‘synthy’.

Can’t Get you – a little cover version to lighten the mood, a little.

Death Tape Updated for 2020 – Just finished this, so have no perspective on it. But it has some weight – in the words I have ‘sequestered’ from two other sources to mash together, and the other worldly vibe of old-Sieben combined with a chill factor I have never achieved as yet on a Sieben record. Sourcing this has haunted me.

Vision – Not quite finished, but the central pivot of the album, thematically. quite rocky beats (all violin, of course), bass and guitar (again, all violin) but some close-harmony and dissonant hummed and sung vocals that take it to another place.

2020 Is The Start Of The End Of The World – Nothing more than a title, currently, along with a vague notion to start with a very heavy list and ‘sieve’ down ’til I see what’s what.

I’ll add some content, and teasers, nearer the date, but have been trying to keep this under wraps as September seems a long way off, currently. I’m cracking on with the album, and making good ground presently. There are plans for some limited tiered-release for 2020 Vision; possibly with 10 leather Sieben bags, limited edition 10 copies of lathe-cut vinyl, and cinema specs you can look through and see the apocalypse happening live. There are no lenses in the specs, of course. You just have to look around.

Matt Howden – Jan 28th 2020

 

2016 coming to a close

Been a busy, and lovely music-filled year, on the road and releasing music. I’ve had great gigs, and lovely times in Bakewell, Balver Höhle (DE), Brighton, Deutzen (DE), London, Lleida (ESP), Newby Bridge, Rome (IT), Sheffield, Vienna (AT), Whitby, Wroclaw (PL) and York. My gig lists back to back are always quite strange. I’m not sure Newby Bridge, Rome and Vienna make it to most gig lists together, nor even in the same sentence! I wouldn’t have it any other way. Along the way, these incorporated a new festival, Hillsfest, and an established one in Whitby’s Musicport, that I had the pleasure of playing for the first time. Playing support for Vieux Farka Toure in Lleida was also a definite highlight. BBC Music Day in my hometown, Sheffield, too. And 7JK concerts in Germany and Poland, with all new material.

7JK_at_NCN_Festival_2016

In 2016 I’ve released the latest Sieben album The Old Magic, and sister album The Other Side Of the River, along with a second 7JK album Ride The Solar Tide, all of which I’m very happy with. Not sure when the next Redroom release may be, but possibly not 2017, at least for a Redroom physical release. If you haven’t any of the above, feel free to visit my shop and purchase them, I could do with the space, and I like them being out there, being heard 🙂 Those ordering from Europe still have a couple of weeks to ensure getting it before Christmas, if its a gift; those further afield only a couple of days. I’ll be including extras with orders, too, to keep the gods of Santa and Commercialism appeased. And because I appreciate people who are still buying music 🙂

Ride The Solar Tide COVER ART

I’m currently laying the floorboards for the latest incarnation of my Redroom studio, its sixth place of residence. And I have vague plans, as my next Redroom release is release number 20: A Sieben album where I free myself from the shackles of ‘having to be able to play it live’. I may write some songs with ‘true’ verses and choruses, where the chords change (steady on, now!); I may do a couple with a band; possibly even some written on piano or from chords; hanging upside down suspended by elastic, if it sounds good. Not even sure yet, nor allowing myself to think hard about it. Until the sound-proofing is down, those floorboards are laid…

Thanks to all for the support with music; coming out to concerts, engaging in the music, booking the artists, buying the music, sharing the music, sorting the venues, making the posters, running the festivals, sharing the events and releases. For caring and loving. For the positivity we can make and emit, in a scary world.

Sieben_Yellowarch_Jun2016

Matt Howden – 29 November 2016

ps: one more Sieben gig to go this year. A local one, for me. Regather, Sheffield, 21 Dec. supporting good friend Andy and his Silver Darlings. We’ll be out and about in the UK in 2017, with plans for London, Croyden, Brighton, and hopefully Edinburgh, Newcastle and Stirling. I’ll also be on the road in Europe, with concerts in Poland and Germany already pencilled in 🙂

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