Minds Music Monday – Silent Kiss

Yesterday saw the second anniversary of the release of Walk Between Worlds.

Of course it was the day that Jim and Charlie appeared at the HMV in Argyle Street for an album signing. I was so, sooo nervous! Lol. Silly, really, as I had met them both before already, but the more it goes on – my involvement in the fanbase, how much more in love with the band (Jim!) and the music I become, the less and less confident I am.

It all means too much, and I feel my eyes already beginning to sting with tears just thinking about what it all means to me.

But, hey. Never mind. All good things must come to an end.

I cringe at the memory of placing that bag of sherbet straws in front of Jim. Just me and my silliness. Just trying to deflect what was really going on inside my head which was me standing there gawping at this beautiful man and being struck dumb.

Anyway…as yesterday was the second anniversary of the album’s release, for MMM, I am sharing my favourite track on the deluxe version of the album. I still think it is a crime this song was not included on the standard version of the album.

It is beautiful…

Seeing Through The Eyes Of Love

It’s now 4 years since this happened and I know Jim will be utterly bloody bored with it, so I’ll just keep the memory here on the blog.

This anniversary I find myself back in Oz, so this year feels just a little more special, yet painfully sad.

Kyoto might well still be in snow, but most of the Eastern seaboard of Australia, as well as parts of Adelaide and Perth, have been aflame this summer.

Again for most of the outer suburbs of Sydney, up to Newcastle, and down to the south coast, past Wollongong (where regional coastal towns are on high alert as fires threaten to ravage the area again, having only just gone through the devastation just 72 hours ago) and into country areas of New South Wales, temps are set to be a minimum of 40 degrees Celsius – with the average being 44 tomorrrow.

After Saturday’s extremes, the temp. drops away and falls by 20+ degrees for a high of 25 in Sydney on Sunday and 22 on Monday.

Four years ago, the weather was unusually cool for the time of year – 21 degrees and drizzle. A rare overcast and rainy day.

Well the days I’ve had here I’ve hardly seen the sun but for vastly different reasons.

Also this time four years ago, I was spending – what I feared would turn out to be – my final months with mum.

And so I say it time and again, my Hunter And The Hunted piece will forever be the most special thing to me. I don’t know how much I can express all that is wrapped up in it.

The significance of the song… it really is just about the finest thing Simple Minds ever produced – and as a consequence how enamoured I am with Jim. He is just beautiful… the lyrics to the song and just him… body and mind. Intelligence. Beauty.

And I still feel that my piece on it compliments the beauty of the song.

And there’s mum and those precious final months with her. I never wanted those months to be the final ones😔💔

I knew time was running out.

This silly mind is still waiting for us to travel to Busby to go and see her… wondering why we haven’t been yet. Pulling into Liverpool Station on the train and not getting off the train there feels really wrong.

The anniversary will be more special every year.

Jim, thank you. I will love you always for this. 💕😚

Empires And Dance Appreciation – Constantinople Line

I originally wrote the following in January, 2016 as a “Why I Love…” piece for the blog. Little has changed in my feeling for this song. It’s bloody fab! I share the demo version of the song because it is the one stuck in my head today more than the album version. Enjoy!

***** It’s the rhythm of it to begin with. Very reminiscent of David Bowie’s Station To Station. It reminds me of it, but is far enough removed not to sound a pastiche.
A great bassline once again from “Big Dan”. And Charlie uses the guitar effects for a nice screeching sound. Maybe it’s just reverb. I can’t claim to understand what I hear, but I know I like it!

Absolutely one of the best set of lyrics Jim has ever written. They are very image laced. I see the pictures in my head when he sings them “I see a land, as we crawl by night /I see a face on the window in front” – I love those lines so much! And possibly my favourite lines from ANY SM song…ever “these stations are useful / these stations we love them” when it wasn’t very “de rigueur” to claim to “love” things like that. I’m assuming because of such, Jim is very much saying it tongue-in-cheek, which I love. (No pun intended!)

The demo version has different lyrics. He sounds like he’s ad libbing a bit. The song’s musical structure is there…and some of the final lyrics are there (including the “these stations” ones) but there are some lines that don’t gel. He did a wonderful job refining and trimming. The demos can make you appreciate the final cut so much more…
And, of course, the song ends with the sound of a train.

It just does a great job of letting you feel that train journey experience. Foreign lands…people behaving shifty…cloak and dagger…it’s like Strangers On A Train. Simple Minds do Hitchcock and borrow a *tiny* bit from Bowie and do a stellar job.
This song…I love it! 😜😊 *****

P.S. The artwork is a really early days one. An oldie but a goodie. Jim liked it. Halcyon days 😌

Empires And Dance Appreciation – KANT KINO

It is my favourite Simple Minds instrumental.

My favourite David Bowie track of them all is A New Career In A New Town – that “town” being Berlin. I heard an instant parallel between ANCIANT and Kant Kino. Both have an incredible emotional pull on me – both brought me to tears the first time I heard them.

Although most of my SM art is about Jim’s lyrics, I have done the odd piece on an instrumental track. I made one for Kant Kino. (Dave Kelly then egged me on to do one for Somebody Up There Likes You, which Jim subsequently seemed to like so much, he actually requested a copy from me. Something that amazes me still to this day. It always will.)

We have our own “bucket list” things that we want and wish for. Mine for a VERY long time now has been to visit Berlin. I will finally get to tick it off the list in December. On the list of things to see is – to take a stroll down the Potsdamer Platz, to visit Checkpoint Charlie and Hansa Studios. One or two other things too, hopefully. A David Bowie (and Iggy Pop) pilgrimage.

The other thing on the list will be to stand outside of Kant Kino…well…I might just go in and see a film…who knows? It’s still open as a cinema complex.

Say Who You Are!

The album that did it for me. The one that, during my exploration of the Simple Minds back catalogue, “sealed the deal”. Empires And Dance put me into a state of…I dunno…suspended animation. I quite literally could not believe what I was hearing…that the band responsible for Don’t You (Forget About Me ) – subsequently I learned how much involvement there was in that, obv. – Alive And Kicking, Sanctify Yourself, etc, had also made stuff LIKE THIS?! It just blew my tiny frigging mind. I’m not holding up the songs mentioned to belittle them or say they’re inferior in ANY WAY….it is just a fact that Simple Minds within a 5 year period became a very different band musically and that I had NO KNOWLEDGE of how they sounded in 1980.

So, again for me personally, in 2014 listening to Empires And Dance for the first time was like discovering an entirely new band. And with the anniversary of its release this week, I just wanted to talk about it a bit, share some of my art inspired from the tracks and just give it and its content some praise.

I wouldn’t be the mega diehard (but has she earned her stripes yet?) SM fan I am now without this album existing, I don’t think.

Today I share what is at this point possibly my very favourite live version of Thirty Frames A Second. Jim stalking around that stage like a freshly uncaged animal. Leaping about like a jack rabbit…never faulting vocally…but being raw and emotive and just….GGRRRRRRRR!!! I love it!