Thursday, 8 April 2010

The Obligatory Love Song

Oh yes, I made a Steveless video.

Unfortunately, I blew the recording budget on pieces of paper. Still, I like to think it nestles into the pantheon of film history somewhere alongside Kurosawa and Bergman.

video

Friday, 26 March 2010

Cube jingles at the Cube

You can hear those Steveless Cube Cola jingles this Saturday at...the Cube, yeah. Suprising that. Here is the PR whoring:

Cabaret Of Curiosities: Radio Curio

Image

20:00 27/03/2010

8pm / £7 / £8

Roll up and Tune in as Zuleika H. Ziegfeld and Pappy O'Paradise present Radio Curio from ZBC!

We want you - yes YOU! - to come and join the live audience for an auditory amazement! A sonic spectacle! A radiophonic revelation!

We'll be presenting a variety of features from dance, comedy, circus and burlesque live from the auditorium!

We're pleased to announce the line-up will include music from Jack Woodhead, H P Lovebox, Narco Lounge Combo, magic by Kieron Kirkland as well as Boys and Dance's new guise, acrobatics and a Snake dance from Poppy Von Tarte!

For one night only, The Cabaret of Curiosities celebrates three years of vaguely vintage vaudeville and variety, a magnificent melange of merry music, a bountiful bevy of beautiful burlesque and an astounding abundance of alliteration!
Stay tuned for updates!

TICKETS FROM THE HERE SHOP, BRISTOL TICKET SHOP AND PRIME CUT
£7 adv £8 door

DRESS CODE: Eccentric Glamour, radio accessories!!

~This programme is brought to you by Cube Cola, a refreshing alternative, Standing on the Hands of Giants.~

Thursday, 25 March 2010

More BBC Bristol

Ohh, I had another track played on BBC Bristol Introducing. A fantastic little number called "I Opened that Door Again".

Bugger, I missed it, though. I would love to know what they thought of it. Its a track so fractious and odd that its coming round the other side and become catchy as hell.

I shall stick it up here soon.

Sunday, 21 March 2010

Storm the Charts

Steveless is now entered into Storm the Charts.

Storm the Charts is a Facebook group - started by Mr Wes White - which seeks to use its membership to propel 40 unsigned acts into the UK Top 40.

Its proved a bit of a phenomenon thus far, since the start membership has rocketed, and it has duly received a large amount of media attention.

Acts nominate themselves - and there has been a fantastic response - with the final 40 being chosen by a mixture of membership votes and panel deliberation.

The deadline for applications is March 23rd, and the charts shall be stormed the week commencing June 5th.

The campaign is also supporting a VERY worthy charity - EDGE, who work to conserve unique and wonderful animals on the verge of extinction, and whom you can donate to here.

We'll see how this all pans out; with Steveless or Stevelessless, I am very excited by it. And so should you.

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

Attack!!!

I have just received six tracks that I recorded in one two-hour improv session in the back of my parents' car (my home studio) for Wes White's fantastic Attack!!! fanzine. Dan Bennett of Hunting had been mastering them for me.

For Attack!!!, artists are invited to respond to a piece of writing that has appeared in a previous volume. There has been a Steveless track featured before, "n", in issue 6, and I have a piece of writing included in a forthcoming volume.

Check out Attack!!!, it is great.

As are my tracks. I love them. Several of them are really sweet, one a really pretty piano based song. They're all pretty much about friendship. Lovely.

Now I just have to turn them from Wav files to mp3 and send them off to Wes. Then we'll see how many, if any, he fancies including. Any that aren't, I'll stick them right up here.

But yes, I am excited by these, it's nice to get your musics back from someone else and enjoy it anew.

Friday, 12 March 2010

Pondering. Hmm.

Sometimes I wonder, would Steveless be BETTER or NOT AS GOOD if I tried to make musics properly - spending time writing and developing songs, using numerous takes, utilising myriad effects, getting in proper production.

It doesn't matter, either way, because it wouldn't be as fun so I wouldn't do it. Just thinking, like.

The Cube

The Cube is one of my very favourite places in Bristol. It's a microplex cinema and venue, staffed by volunteers. You should go check out it's website.

Anyway, Mr Richie Paradise was looking for jingles for their next, radio themed, Cube Cabarat shindig, on 27th March, and posted a request up on the Choke forum.

Thus far three folk have responded. Dan, otherwise known as Rarg, Tone, DJ Antonio Maovi and far too many other aliases to mention, and myself. Dan did two, Tone did five and I've done six. I'm going to stick up a link for one of the Steveless ones here. I'll put the rest up eventually, I'm sure.

Cube Cole Jingle Number Four

My Dad was in bed (he works nights) when I recorded it, so it features me whisper-singing. This is not some attempt to introduce a Schoenberg-esqe new style.

It makes me smile anyway.

And that has to be a good thing.

Sunday, 7 March 2010

In my Dream, I Made a Film

Here's another new track:

In my Dream, I Made a Film

The title is QUITE self-explanatory. I had a dream in which I was making a film (and it was better than yours). Not only was I making it, I was staring in it. It was a scary film, where there was some great, big dirty bomb that went off. Only a few survivors remained. At least, remained normal. It was quite John Carpenter.

Anyway, I did some improvisation the next day, needed words, and it was that dream which came to me.

Recorded in my bedroom in half an hour, yet so far played by the two radio shows I have sent it to: Adam Walton on BBC Radio Wales and Bristol Introducing on BBC Bristol. The former called it weirder than Captain Beefheart, the latter challenging. Both laughed. Hmm.

I really like this song, it's fun. I especially like the ending "I'd call it Dan's Film. About a Bomb." Which I would do. If only one of those damn studios would commission it. The Man, huh?

Enjoy

More new songs

Two more today, in an hour.

That's eleven inside a week. I am going well.

It is meant to be about quantity, not quality, right?

Thursday, 4 March 2010

New Songs

Over the course of two days this week (two hours one day, half an hour today), I have recorded the princely total of nine new songs.

I think I probably like most of them. You might not.

Today was particularly productive. Bored of not working very hard at my thesis, I took a little break, thirty minutes later, three in the can. That isn't a euphemism.

Today's songs are sad, though. Self-pitying, I'm sure.

A couple from earlier in the week were very sweet indeed.

Sweet? Self-pitying? What has become of Steveless? I thought they were all supposed to be about eating dates and being bored (not at the same time; how could one be the latter if engaged in the former?).

You will hear these new songs in due course.

Sunday, 21 February 2010

BBC Bristol...

Call listening to Steveless a challenge.

I like that; bit of effort by me, bit of effort by you. In the end we're all a bit worn out but satisfied.

No pain no gain.

BBC Bristol Introducing

So, new Steveless track on BBC Bristol Introducing tonight again, 1am to 3 am. Yes, that's really tomorrow, but they call it Sunday.

I missed it last night as I'm a bit ill, so not sure what track it was. But do listen folks, because it'll be a good one! And it's a great show anyway.

Saturday, 20 February 2010

Hope

Here's another old song for you. Hope, the opening track of The Home EP. I think I did it the week after Run.

It was recorded way back in 2004, on my trusty old four-track.

I can remember recording it in my bedroom at my parents' house...first I improvised some drums, then a bass guitar, then I did two vocals tracks and a bit of melodica. The whole thing probably took about quarter of an hour to write (hah!)/record. Although, it wasn't a straight fifteen minutes; what I used to do back then was record several songs worth of drums at once. As i think there were six songs on The Home EP, I would have done six lots of drums and then come back to finish off this one.

I also have a lovely memory of travelling back from Brecon to Pontyclun, having watched the Super Furry Animals play, and hearing it on the Peel show on Radio One. It was the night of a session by The Fall I think, and Peel got Steveless and The Fall mixed up as he cued up the track.

Unfortunately, that wasn't the only time that happened!

But yes, download, listen, enjoy. More to come.

Hope!

BBC Bristol Introducing

There will be a new Steveless track played on this week's Bristol Introducing on BBC Radio Bristol.

I'm not sure what track it is yet; shall have to wait and see.

You can listen between 1am and 3am both Saturday and Sunday nights.

You can get it online on the BBC website or, if you're near the city, on DAB or FM at 94.9, 103.6 or 104.

Good.

Monday, 15 February 2010

Steveless; according to Adam Walton

I just really loved the description Adam Walton made of Steveless on his show last night. I never bothered to note any of the fun ones from last time I did Steveless, so I'm making a point of keeping this one now:

"If you’ve ever wondered what kind of music Captain Beefheart would listen to and go “Pff, that’s a bit wierd”; then it would probably be Steveless."

That's me.

Run

Oh, way back when, in 2004, I believe, the wonderful, sadly departed, Taffpop Records of Swansea, released the first Steveless single.




















They put it out as a split with Swansea's finest (if ever there was a backhanded compliment...) Syd Howells and his mob Photographed by Lightning.




















More of that blighter another time, though perhaps you could also seek out Steveless and Syd Howells, Syd Howells, Thee Bable Fish, Doris Karloff or The Disasters records in the meantime. If you're still sane after all of that, then you're welcome to return here.

Anyway, Syd's side was Eyes on Stalks; my side was Run.

This was the first track I ever recorded with a drum kit on it. I'd had it the previous week for Chrimbob and was keen to use it, so I set it up and then set the tape player going.

I thought I could now do "proper" songs.

This was the start of my recording experience, really. In those days, I didn't know how to cut the beginning off a song, so it begins with a bit of quiet bumbling as I ran from the tape recorder to the drum stool on the other side of the room. Of course, I was improvising, so I then proceeded to hit the drums for a while until I found a beat; this had the twin benefit of also giving me some warning for when I added the other layers of instruments/vocals later. I was never able to start a song right away, and I hate count-ins. So, to ruin what might otherwise be an ever so dramatic and portentous intro; it was all practicalities, round my way.

I can't remember what the song is about. But I was a moody little student at the time, so clearly it would be all about me. That's what people want, though, right?

I haven't listened to it yet, and will do so when I upload it in a minute. I do know, though, that it's bloody good and I have always been quite proud of it. I was chuffed to pieces that Taffpop wanted to release it. One day, I shall talk more about Taffpop, putting the single together and the launch party. But I'm hungry and want to get off. Suffice to say, this was a good moment for Steveless, it got a bit of attention and some good radio play, including BBC Radio One and BBC Radio Wales.

It's still available in some shops now. Although, for a lot more than it used to be. So, for those buggers still selling it - and at marked up prices - I'm sorry, but its now free. That one sale you hoped for in the next five years...probably not happening.

Download to your heart's content:

Run

Adam Walton on Radio Wales

So, the first of my new Steveless songs got their first radio play this weekend; on Adam Walton's Radio Wales show of 14th. It was a song called 'In my Dream, I Made a Film'; which Adam described as a little too weird for Captain Beefheart. Perfect description, thank you Adam.

For the next week or so, you can listen to it here on the BBC iPlayer:

Adam Walton - 14/02/2010

The Steveless track is near the end, at about two hours and forty five minutes in, after a beautiful song by Cate le Bon. But that is irrelevant; you should listen to the whole show if you like new and exciting musics. Always interesting, with a wonderfully enthusiastic and endearing presenter. His show is on every Sunday from ten pm to one am on the Monday. Worth starting a new week knackered for.

I shall post another Steveless track up here later.

Friday, 12 February 2010

More next week

I shall be posting up one of my very first tracks, Run. Sometime this weekend. It will be worth the wait because it is the good. Probably, I haven't heard it for a couple of years. I just know I have a load of copies of the single knocking around (yeah, it sold BIG!).

Tuesday, 2 February 2010

The Dennis Hopper Song

Okay, so here's the first bit of Steveless for you. Brand new, hot off the presses and so on. It's a track called The Dennis Hopper Song.

Click on the link to download the song.

The Dennis Hopper Song

I've posted up a photo of the lyrics as follows; if you can't make up my lovingly rendered scrawl as captured through the magic of camera phone, it's a paean to Frank Booth. Or, rather, Dennis Hopper. They're kind of one and the same in my head. He's not doing too well at the moment, so let's take it as a tribute to the man.
























So this is solo Steveless, just me in my bedroom, improvising layer on layer (all first takes) until I think there's enough there to be called "a song".

So, what's on this track...a couple of layers of out of tune guitar played through a broken down car boot sale amp...a biscuit tin being hit with a Rock Band drum stick...a cardboard box being pummelled...and my dulcet tones; I did feel naughty swearing, but I think it was tastefully done, and the part called for it dear.

Anyway, now for the disclaimer...I've only been recording again for a couple of weeks. It's my first time not using tape, I'm trying to use computers. It's a bit of a struggle as I really am a total techtard. However, I can just about plug it in and press record. I didn't really mix it, just put it as was really. However, it was mastered by the very lovely Mr Daniel Bennett. You might know him as the guitar from the incredible band that is Hunting Lodge. He did it as a favour, and very appreciative I am too.

Anyway, if anyone just likes it then please let me know here. Make me feel it's worthwhile posting tracks up for you. And spread the word, pass it on; free musics!

I warn you, I will be back soon enough with more Steveless.

Sleep well.

Monday, 1 February 2010

Steveless Tunes

Oh, hi! It's been ages.

Yeah, alright. What about you?

Cool.

Umm...I like your hair.

Oh, I thought you'd done something different to it.

Ah, maybe, yeah.


Anyway, welcome to the Steveless Tunes Blog thing. I had this idea the other day and, I must say, I think it was rather a good one. I'm going to use this Blog to link to a load of mp3s of Steveless tracks for you to download. All free, of course.


I'll be shoving them up periodically. Rhys, from the band, tells me that our webspace is enough for about five hundred tracks. So that's the challenge; to fill it up.


There will be both old and new tracks. The old will involve me trawling my old CDRs and the depths of my computer for a bunch of songs I'd forgotten about (and presumably blocked out). The new means that I am actually recording again, hoorah! For the first time in two or three years.


They will mostly be just me, Steveless Dan, but I might put up some Steveless Band and/or Steveless and Syd Howells, depending on whether the others let me. We shall see.


I'm going to bugger off now, but I will return. Honest. And with the first of the tunes.


Oh, before I go, I should point out that this Blog does use the term "tunes" rather liberally.


Ta ra, Dan.