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Running With Cheese

a cappella gospel, early music, tremolo guitars, lactic solids, the Heavenly Lights, vocal workshops, music publications, recordings and other associated musical projects...

The Living Hamsters

Tony Backhouse - Wednesday, April 07, 2010
Recording the Living Hamsters: just spent three productive and hilarious weeks in Napier, where, inbetween repeated viewings of Harry Enfield’s Hitler and Eduardo Hill’s ‘Trololo’ on youTube, I was working with Fane Flaws and Peter Dasent on the recording project started in 2006. Back then we recorded the rhythm tracks in Fane's bedroom with drummer John Rae. It’s a bunch of songs written by various combinations of the three of us over the years, though my part in the compositional process was mostly limited to some lyrics and the odd bass riff. The idea was to finish off as much as we could of the vocals, guitars and keys in Fane’s shed – though ‘shed’ doesn’t do justice to his airy and well-appointed ex-schoolhouse in Marewa – and we got close to completing about 10 tracks. I provided a couple of mics and preamps, and what gear we didn’t have, our engineer Warren Sang could be relied upon to have in his car. It was a seriously focused time for me, 3 weeks of thinking about nothing but music - though I did get to hear Katchafire at a winery one night, which was a significant improvement on the rather average Motown show I'd seen in February at Mission Estate. (Why was Jimmy Barnes on a Motown show?)
    At these sessions, I added swathes of vocals and some inept guitar parts that sound OK backwards. Peter was, as always, astonishing in his unerring orchestrational sense, always playing the perfect thing on the first take, be it clavinet, organ, piano or assorted orchestral samples. Fane sang with me, and played some excellent guitar. But who knows when the finished article will reach your ears – further sessions (horn overdubs and mixing) are mooted for Sydney later in the year.