Friday, 24 October 2008

dirty hands xfm session : 30/08/07


So in my life before entering the blogosphere, I fronted a band called Dirty Hands. We released a single, did an XFM session then split up as two of us were moving to Paris as part of our French degrees. XFM never told us when the session was going out and then took an age to send me the session. I never thought I was going to hear it really. But thanks to Jim at XFM, it popped into my letterbox this week to whoops of joy.

Returning to something you left over a year ago, without really thinking about it in the meantime is strange. As if it had just been stuffed in a drawer, a safe place but then completely forgotten about. As a band, we didn't write many songs (I think maybe 12 or 13 over two years) but they were all damn good. If you play lots of gigs, you get tight and it just ends up being really reflexive.

Here's a little insight into the writing of the four songs on the session, which looking back certainly provides a lyrical insight into the rollercoaster bedlam that was my second year at university, spent playing the long game, chasing the dream and trying to prevent the inevitable hangover:

What About The Frames?




By the end this had become our intro song. We liked to start with a bang. Lyrically, it recounts a friend’s 21st party with a free bar. To this day, I still don’t think I’ve ever seen that many people that fucked in one room. Upon falling out of a taxi on the Strand to get our connecting nightbus eastside, we encountered some youths who accused one of our lot to be looking at his bird. They weren’t looking to reason, however, requiring no reason to unleash punches left / right / centre. Our good friend, Tom, got a stiletto to the head for his troubles, Robin (guitars / vocals) lost his phone and I got my glasses smashed into wiry little pieces. My dismay at the damage to my specs forms the angry, but humourous backbone of the song.

All of My Respect





Built around a sterling Korg riff from Douglas, this badboy fuses a nice turn of phrase from Craig Clevenger’s Dermaphobia with that feeling of being half-awake, drooling on lecture notes whilst you long for the night before at some dark, dirty warehouse carpark supermarket supercool venue obviously getting down to a guitar solo from heaven.

Desire. Desire. Desire





Borne out of beatsmith JK’s desire to write a song like that Larrikin Love one (I think he meant Edwould) it then went off a slightly fairground gypsy tangent. Lyrically, I put myself in the shoes of Xavier Rousseau (Romain Duris in Les PoupĂ©es Russes) who carelessly tosses aside his girlfriend by chasing a beautiful, but shallow, model who ultimately doesn’t fulfil him anyway. Managed to squeeze in a vocal breakdown and a London Calling esque yelp in there too.

Get On Yer Bike (Charlie)






First proper song I ever wrote about 3 years ago now. A simple tale fusing characters from George Orwell’s Down And Out In Paris and London and a tour diary tale from the most prominent ‘rockstar’ of the last decade. Go figure, I’m not going to make it too obvious, but the song was a valiant attempt to capture the feeling of being beaten to a girl by your best mate, and not being able to say anything. You then settle for much worse.

So there you have it, a single came out on Happy Release just before I went off to Paris to form anew. You can still buy it here. Will set up some kind of savefile for all the songs that we did and edit this post later. I think these recordings, weighing in at ten minutes, demonstrate how tight we were as a band and how we progressed musically and probably would have continued our ascent. It's angry as hell, which was definitely how I felt, I can't really speak for the others.

Lots of new content coming up, be excited.

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