I thought that was a fairly benign entry. For info, Oskar 2 is done and mastered. Stephen Hero 6 is in recording mode. For any future info see Stephen Hero on Facebook. I really don’t need any abuse or vileness, there’s plenty of that in every day life. What horrible times to be in, 1932 once more. This blog is done. Bye.

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Neglect

May 18, 2018

Lots of good intentions to write here. Instead I wrote elsewhere. In little notebooks. Then burnt them. But what use is that to those wanting urgent information in these immediate times?

Well, news-hounds, here’s what I’ve been up to. Oskar 2 is in mid mix. I think it’s quite startling; a step into the Upside Down from A Cathedral of Hands. But aren’t we already living there? Those are the key themes. How, in some god’s name, did Orange Man happen? For our entertainment? As punishment? Were we not vigilant? The Manics are wrong – Resistance is Beautiful.

In my spare time, other than planting and hoeing, I’ve also written a new Stephen Hero record. Recording has just begun on that. First one in 9 years.

A fertile time for me, mulched by the excrement of Trump.

In the studio with Oskar

January 23, 2018

This is always my favourite part. The songs are written, now it’s time for the recording. Yves not only plays great guitar, he’s also a fine drummer. Today we get to put down the drums on the new Oskar’s Drum songs. I say ‘we’, but I just sit there grinning. Next it’s time to start mixing. The new pieces sound spacious and dirty. And sad and dancey. Can’t wait to get it out there.

Autumn gigs

September 23, 2017

Though quiet here, it’s been a busy time. I’ve written a guide to end of life care, for patients and families rather than doctors. More of that soon – it will be out in October hopefully.

To brighten the mood after months of intense focus on dying, there are two gigs booked. Oskar’s Drum play Salford October 29th at the Eagle with Stephen Hero (me, solo) opening. We play London Oslo, November 3rd, opening for Brix and the Extricated. The second Oskar album is a huge dark beast, and we’re looking forward to playing a few of the new songs at these shows. It will be out early in the new year.

You can get tickets for Salford from Bandcamp by clicking here: BANDCAMP

You can get tickets for London: HERE

Happy equinox everyone. Here’s to the darker days, if they could be any darker.

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This was fun. A weekend in Wales, meeting up with my friend Fern to support her on her odyssey around the newly opened and lengthy coastal path. She was in Anglesey, one of my favourite places, so I went down for the weekend. Fern and I had worked together years ago on This Imaginary Woman, a theatrical song cycle of grief for Volcano theatre company. Now 13 years later I wondered if she fancied dancing to our new Oskar’s Drum song? We talked about different scenarios: a dark studio room with roaming lights, of two dancers interacting. What about just dancing on the beach listening to the song for the first time, I asked? Only if I can do anything I want, said Fern, knowing that she wasn’t one to hold back. And here it is, spliced from three performances in quick succession: wild, wet and free. Love it. Thanks so much Fern. 

The single is available at Oskar’s Drum Bandcamp shop.

Golden

March 4, 2017

This was a saga. Test pressing after test pressing. Put me off vinyl for life. Finally we got a company who could do it properly, but it took a year to make. A year for a 7″ single. Not like that in 1966, when I think this song could have been around. Obsession and desire in a wash of piano and guitars. And French horns and flutes. And a beautiful vocal from Tanya Donelly. It deserved a physical release I felt, and I’m so glad it’s finally come together. 

Here’s a slow film to go with it, walking up the steps of Hatshepsut’s temple on the left bank of the Nile. Next week you get the video for Anyone but Yourself, and the single gets mailed out. Thanks for bearing with us. 

The single is available from patrickfitzgerald.bandcamp.com

Platform Shoes

February 18, 2017

We’ve made a video for The April Seven song ‘Platform Shoes’. The CD of Pop Tarkovsky has been repressed and is available again from Bandcamp

I’m very fond of this song. Fred sings of our 70s youth, the foibles, the fashion, the New York Dolls, Bowie. What a great time to be a kid, such amazing stomping music. What an awful time to be a kid, playing fashion catch up, the mad switch from glam to punk. Fred was down in Southampton, dealing with the southern prejudices. I was at school in Rusholme, at the hands of the ruffians. Couldn’t wait to escape. 

Anyone but Yourself

February 12, 2017

Really glad to announce this 7″ single which has been some time in the making. It should have been ready last year prior to A Cathedral of Hands but the vinyl pressing plant we used were unhelpful. After much hassle it’s sorted and due for release March 17th via Bandcamp.

A side Anyone But Yourself by Oskar’s Drum

AA side Golden by Stephen Hero featuring Tanya Donelly on vocals.

Golden had to be remixed and remastered for vinyl – not noticeable on download but more so on the test pressing.

There is an accompanying video featuring Fern Smith which I will share nearer the release date.

The single will also be available at the forthcoming Oskar’s Drum gigs.


Watch our planet circle

January 28, 2017

One Little Indian are releasing a box set of their Kitchens of Distinction’s back catalogue on March 3rd. This is a remastered CD collection of all four studio albums, B sides and the two BBC sessions we did. It’s available here:

http://www.pledgemusic.com/projects/kitchens-of-distinction-box-set
I wasn’t directly involved in this collection, as my historic relationship with OLI has not been good. I didn’t want to be party to something I didn’t have direct control over. That said, it’s a good job. It’s a mostly complete document of our time with the label, featuring great liner notes and photos. Missing tracks that some commentators are complaining about are either not owned by OLI, or due to band veto. We were never going to add in music that OLI didn’t own due to their inability to account to us. Tedious but practical. 

We had no control over format – so please direct your vinyl woes to OLI directly. http://www.indian.co.uk/pages/contact-us

These caveats aside I’m really glad that our OLI songs have been collected in this way. A better overview than Capsule. Though I’m sure some commentators will add their tuppenceworth.

The title is from the song In A Cave, which is probably my favourite moment with the band. 

Gigs? Of course not. Don’t be silly. And don’t be rude asking for something we can’t do. This really irks me. Like asking your dead relative to rise up and hug you. 

Pop Tarkovsky

January 22, 2017

Thanks to everyone for their support of both of last year’s records. I’ve had a few emails asking for a repressing of Pop Tarkovsky. I’m happy to do this if there’s enough demand out there. Let me know. 

In the meantime there are two Oskar’s Drum shows coming up: March 17th Preston Continental and March 18th London Lexington, opening for the Railway Children.