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The Stands - Horse fabulous

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01.06.2005 - 17:34 Uhr
THE STANDS - Horse Fabulous - 18.07.2005

THE STANDS spielen das Hurricane und das Southside Festival

THE STANDS - Biography

Liverpool, as Paul Du Noyer remarks in his definitive social history "Wondrous Place" , is a city where music isn´t so much integral to daily life as the reason for living it; a city with a heart full of soul where music comes naturally. And never has this been truer than with The Stands: (Howie Payne: lead guitar/vocals; Luke Thomson: guitar, Dean Ravea: bass; and new drummer Graeme Robinson), a group already acknowledged by both The Coral and "blood relatives" The Zutons as posses sors of a rare gift.

But The Stand´s history is far more complex and fascinating than the usual tales of trading Django Reinhart riffs during break-time at West Derby Comp. It´s a result as much of Howie´s teenage upbringing spending time between Liverpool´s melodic basements and the Columbian and Cuban rhythm´s of New York´s Queen´s district, soaking up the Irish folk bands and American funk blasting from neighbourhood sound systems almost by osmosis.

"I think people have got the impression we´ve spent every minute of our lives in Liverpool, but from thirteen and nineteen I lived between Liverpool and New York" explains Howie (a youthful mass of Dylan-esque curls blessed with a voice as thick as the sludge beneath the Mersey-sippi delta).
"you know, I´d deliver groceries in Spanish Harlem, then sneak into anywhere I´d hear music down in the Village. I´d try´d busking to get money to go out. I´d walk around, late at night,uptown, downtown, you know, wherever, limosenes, couples in fur coats and tuxedo´s, citymen in burberry mac?s,bums, hustlers, peep shows, I just watch it all going by."
If the streets provided a technicolour education, Howie got his inspiration to become a musician from the root source: Chicago Blues.
"I don´t know why, man but like that music just blows my mind, from the first time too, I go through lots of listening to different stuff but Chicago and rural blues/folk is why wanted to play guitar, before that I wanted to be a drummer"

In a rock industry creaking under the strain of calculating careerists, The Stands love of music shines through. Full of wit and wisdom, the songs on 2004's debut "All Years Leaving " reflected Howie´s express desire to make a grass roots record,´a band in a room playing songs´, polarised opinion instantly. Those that loved the band such as Mojo ("equistiely seasoned with phlegmy harmonies") and a besotted Noel Gallagher were staggered by their effortless amalgam of everyone from the Byrds to Bob and The Band.
Released in the midst of the "cosmic scouse" onslaught led by The Coral and The Zutons however, less open-minded types simply saw the Stands as perpetrators of pointless retro-activity, despite a series of mind-boggling skunk-fuelled rock-out tours supporting everyone from Oasis to The Libertines to Jet.

"It was irritating that some people could only see that far into it, it´s lazy man, everythings gotta have a label, retro rockers The Stands, zombie rockers The Zutons, rock´n roll rockers Jet, it´s nonsence man but you know, it´s gonna happen so you can´t let it get you down, I don´t care to put a name to what I do" explains Howie.

"I´ve never been part of any scene though I´ve passed through plenty, us and the Zutons, you know, were friends and my brother Sean plays drums for them. Same with Jet or Oasis or whover, we get along good so were friends, it happens, people read into that stuff a lot. If you play music you´ll probably know other people who play music too, if you like what each other does you might hang out, do some shows or something, musicions bounce of each other, pass stuff around and things. We all probably influence each other but maybe not in the obvious ways, it might be a type of amp or a way to mic up some drums or something, you know, but no one wants to do anything other than their own thing. You know when we made All Years Leaving I didn´t want it to sound like a Byrds or a Dylan record, the only records that I was listening to were Dusty Springfield and Burt Janch ones, I just wanted to record some songs I´d written in a studio, with a band, which is what I did. When I listen to it that´s what I hear, I´m very happy about that.

In a bid to reflect such catholic tastes Howie set out on a mission to recruit a producer who could achieve both the warmth of Al Green and the chilly atmospehrics of Jacques Brel.

"I didn´t want to produce this one, I´ve never worked with a producer but this time I felt it would be cool to have someone I could really work with. I wanted to get better sounds, strings, brass, girl singers and stuff, also I figured I´d kinda exhausted my knowledge of the studio on the last record, this record needed more sonic attention of the right kind so we started to meet some producers, met a lot of top guys as well. I wanted to get both the space of something like a Scott Walker record to co exist with a really tight packed rhythm section like say, True Love by Al Green, they wouldn´t understand what I meant. Couldn´t see the relationship between Nearer Than Green and Just Enough Love when there wasn´t one to see, I went to L.A to meet Tom, I´m sitting there saying all these contradictory things that I wanted to get in this record, he just sat and listening, when I got done there was a pause, then he hmm`d and said "cool", then started talking about how it might be done and reasons it would or wouldn´t work. I knew he was one of the best anyway but for me that did it."

Recorded over six weeks with Tom Rothrock (Beck, Elliott Smith, Foo Fighters ) in the legendary Sunset Sound Studios in LA, The Stands new album "Horse Fabulous" achieves this aim with erm, furlongs to spare. It is a record informed by, but never overpowered by Howie´s staggering musical knowledge. On tracks like "Mountains Blue" (replete with mandolin solo) it´s a voyage into shiver-down-the-spine bluegrass, on others, such as the haunting "I Will Journey Home" it´s as touching as anything from the soundtrack of "The Graduate". Elsewhere, on "Back To You" (´Secretaries trade tales of Spring holidays/On far foreign shores/ were waiters clutch straws/And hope they´ll come back again") and the lovelorn "When Night Falls In" (´While alone here in my room/ I revolve around the tune´) there is a tenderness and knack for observation that reflects Howies´ role as a natural songwriter drawn to document the world spinning past his window.

"I go through times when I´m pretty much an insomniac, and I love that time in the middle of the night when everyone´s asleep and I´m still up, reading or writing songs. I watch people go out and then see them on their way back home again."
The result is an album as touched by melancholy and yet full of warmth as any you´ll hear this year. Fact. And anybody doubting the Stands ability to mess with conventional song-structure should head straight for stunning psych-segue "Nearer Than Green". But what about that title, "Horse Fabulous" ?

"I got it from an old cicus poster, in a book of posters someone had left in a hotel room. I was flicking through it as I was falling asleep, the horse fabulous was a performing horse from when lots of circus´s would travel around, I fell asleep, restless kind of night, you know,crazy dreams, this horse found it´s way into one or two of them. Next day on the train trying to think of what to call the record, you know, I just rememberd it and well, it sounded good, explains Howie...."

Indeed. The Stands have proved that at the rock´n´roll circus, the best is always saved until last.

Roll up.
Paul Moody
02.06.2005 - 13:26 Uhr
also ich glaube nicht das sich jemand den ganzen text durchliest..ich habs zu mindest nicht getahn...naja
30.06.2005 - 20:33 Uhr

Album: Horse Fabulous // VÖ: 18.07.2005 // Label/Vertrieb: Echo/Pias/Rough Trade
Was für ein Album!! Als würden Oasis mit Free einen Wettberweb um den besseren Song starten. Tradition und Moderne halten sich die Waage. Dylan, Byrds, JET; Zutons ?alles Vergleiche die man im Wort heranziehen darf, um die Musik zu (v)erklären. Tolle Band.
30.06.2005 - 20:39 Uhr
beim hurricane fand ich die stinklangweilig. nutzen ja alle vergleiche nix, wenn sich die songs wie kaugummi in die länge ziehen und man förmlich sieht, wie sie an geschmack verlieren.
30.06.2005 - 20:46 Uhr
sind das diese "here she comes again"-Stands? Die hab ich ja gefressen, nachdem ich bei Jet-Konzert in Köln in der Eingangshalle auf jemanden warten musste und das ca 2minütige Video in der Zeit erbarmungslose 15mal (mit Ton an!) gelaufen ist. So schmerzhaft kann Harmlosigkeit sein...
09.07.2005 - 01:45 Uhr
. THE STANDS - Video zu "Do It Like You Like"
Das Video zur ersten Single-Auskopplung "Do It Like You Like" aus ihrem neuen Album "Horse Fabulous" (VÖ: 18.07.05) steht jetzt online und ist unter folgenden Links zu erreichen:


29.07.2005 - 23:21 Uhr
das erste album war nen stück besser.
captain kidd
29.07.2005 - 23:24 Uhr
und das war schon scheiße.
29.07.2005 - 23:26 Uhr
howie hat ne bessere stimme als dylan,der alte sack bringt heutzutage ja gar nix mehr.
captain kidd
29.07.2005 - 23:30 Uhr
wer ist bob dylan?
13.08.2005 - 00:14 Uhr
coole scheibe.

Gordon Fraser

Postings: 2152

Registriert seit 14.06.2013

11.04.2016 - 19:20 Uhr
Wunderbares Album, tolle Band. Schade dass es nix dauerhaftes geworden ist.

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