10 Mar 2014 9:17pm
Our first record, Suburban Light, is getting an expanded reissue by Merge Records in May. Both vinyl and CD versions will have an extra disc with 30 minutes of rare and unreleased stuff, which we compiled by slowly and painfully going through a carrier bag of old portastudio master tapes over Xmas.
It was quite surprising what we found - songs we’d recorded and sung but completely forgotten - a string quartet prelude to a tune that was never finished (how the hell did we even know a string quartet?), an expensively recorded brass quartet-led version of What Goes up which was so out of tune as to be unreleasable other than for comedy purposes. A cover of a Jacques Brel song sung in original, and horribly English accented French. It also brought me back to a well remembered space from the past.
We recorded most of Suburban Light in the room above guitarist and singer Innes Phillips’ garage in the summer of 1996, after finishing at University and signing on to the dole. We had an 8 track portastudio and two mics. We sang through guitar amps ‘cos we liked the way their reverb sounded on our voices. We couldn’t afford a guitar tuner. Below you can see us playing in his garden in 1994. Really fighting the urge to be nostalgic here so will just say a. look at that Luna t shirt! and b. it’s a really special feeling when someone thinks stuff you did when you were young is worth revisiting.
Suburban Light is out May 13. The Clientele are playing a special one-off show at the Bell House in Brooklyn, NYC on March 21st.