The Surfing Magazines are an indie supergroup of sorts. Comprised of members from The Wave Pictures (David Tattersall and Franic Rozycki), Slow Club (Charles Watson) and drummer Dominic Brider, they released their debut album last Friday (1st September) on Moshi Moshi and are on the road for ten dates in September to promote it.
Here, David Tattersall and Charles Watson from the band give DiS a track-by-track guide to the record...
Sawdust In My Eyes
Live dub reggae folk murder-mystery story, influenced equally by Spanish food and by that sea shanty that goes "Up jumps a shark and shows his big teeth." Is it a going-straight story, or is it the day before a heist? This is like the first chapter of a James Ellroy book - one of those ones that are really about his mother. The tape ran out before we finished rocking. You can hear it run out. I think if it hadn't have run out we'd have kept hammering away at that E Minor all night. (David)
Voices Carry Through The Mist
'Voices Carry Through The Mist' is based on a random chapter of The Big Sleep by Raymond Chandler and set to some 60s west coast jams. I’m not normally a fan of mixing noir crime thrillers with music, but there was one particular action packed page that was asking for it. (Charles)
Perhaps the greatest surf guitar instrumental of the last twenty years, punningly dedicated by name to our drummer and to the 1960 British horror thriller by Michael Powell, called Peeping Tom. This film's controversial subject and the extremely harsh reception by critics effectively destroyed Powell's career as a director in the United Kingdom. However, it attracted a cult following, and in later years, it has been re-evaluated and is now widely considered a masterpiece. The same might be expected of this offering, by The Surfing Magazines. (David)
In Cold Blood by Truman Capote, if it happened in Wymeswold (Leicestershire) in the late 80s and then got turned into a true crime musical in which all the songs are in the key of E Minor. Very influenced by born-again-Christian-era Bob Dylan. If only we had a time machine we could go back and sneak this onto side two of Shot Of Love, in between ‘Dead Man, Dead Man’ and ‘In The Summertime’. Summer: This is a classic waiting to be ignored. In fairness, it would be better if Bob Dylan sang it. But only slightly. (David)
Making this record was a real learning curve in a totally different way of writing and recording. The songs were written quickly and recorded quickly to tape. If you get it wrong it’s just basically on the record. It sure can focus the mind! 'New Day' is a super quick tune. I’m not totally sure what its about. There are some Russian dolls in there, a birthday clown, and apparently I want to throw all my clothes away! (Charles)
One Of These Days
This is a sort of soul-type tune, a little like 'Every Grain of Sand' off Shot Of Love by Bob Dylan, but without the gravitas, or the religion. It's sort of a comedy song that isn't obviously funny. The guitar part and the melody are more important than the words in this case. It would be a good song to sell to the Brit School. Then we could start to make some real money. A really bad soul singer could have a hit single with this. (David)
Goose Feather Bed
This a song about pinball and death done in the style of the early Rolling Stones doing Bo Diddley. Drummer Dominic Brider plays harmonica like a young Mick Jagger. And he does the drums too! And he looks like a young Mick Jagger, too!! The guitar style is quite rockabilly influenced, choppy and dark. The Surfing Magazines would have faired well in the mid 50s to mid 60s golden age of rock and roll. We could have backed up Gene Vincent after he left the Blue Caps. We could have been the Pirates behind Johnny Kidd. (David)
A Fran Escaped
Perhaps the second greatest surf guitar instrumental of the last twenty years, punningly dedicated by name to our bassist and to the 1956 French film by Robert Bresson called A Man Escaped. Both A Man Escaped and 'A Fran Escaped' are considered to be great masterpieces by those few who have encountered them. (David)
Orange And Blue
The verses are like 'Dancing With Mr. D.' from Goats Head Soup and the choruses are more like Squeeze, cheesy pop style, but essentially this is a song about a man who is having a nervous breakdown because he can't see his children, sung very convincingly by Dominic Brider, a man who is always on the verge of having a nervous breakdown. (David)
Lines And Shadows
“The problem with putting two and two together is that sometimes you get four, and sometimes you get twenty-two.” - Dashiell Hammett. This is definitely the type of song that puts two and two together and gets twenty-two. (David)
You Could Never Come To Me Too Soon
Because I remember school and it was horrible, and I have to have a drink today whenever I think of it. Because rocking out is good for the soul. And because, as Dylan Thomas once said, "An alcoholic is someone you don't like who drinks as much as you do." (David)
The Surfing Magazines is out now via Moshi Moshi. For more information on The Surfing Magazines, please visit their Facebook page.