Early Recordings
Got More Bills
Back In The Black
This Time Next Year
GOT MORE BILLS
'Got More Bills' was the third album from the band, following 'Down to the Last P' (1977 on vinyl!) and 'Loose Change' (2004 re-mastering of miscellaneous 1976-77 tapes). It thus introduced the first new recordings for almost 30 years, all composed, arranged, performed and produced by the band.

Not that we didn't have lots of help! Especially from some consummate Heswall musicians whom we gratefully acknowledge here - Andy Stinson (keyboards), Tony Gallacher (bass), Brian Murphy (drums), Lins Trussell (fiddle) and Emily Roberts (sax). It's a credit to their fortitude that several of these great musicians are STILL working with us!

We were ably assisted by the guys at Starlight Studios (Andy Miles & Mike Watson) whose patience, musical advice and technical help were welcome essentials in mastering the 21st-century technology employed in any modern recording.

The Songs

The earlier albums drew on the often melancholy experiences of youth for their inspiration. The songs on 'Got More Bills' contain some reflection on the past, but also a celebration of mid-life and an on-going indulgence in the fun of rock n' roll. Most of the lyrics come from our resident wordsmith Nigel, whilst the music often arises best when writing in tandem. To answer the oft-asked question 'which came first?' - Nigel often fits the lyrics to Ron's guitar riffs, whilst Jon prefers to put the music to Nigel's lyrics. There are also some solo compositions from Nigel and Ron.

'How can I say?', 'When are you going to realise?' and 'Love was out of town' are new renditions of early compositions harking back to the griping pains of young love. These 3 are in the tradition of the band, predominantly close harmony vocal pieces woven around Ron's guitar work, while Old Guitar, Belle and Blind Man are more wistful observations on the transition from youth to adulthood and rely musically on more complex arrangements. Listen out especially for the guitar / sax interplay from Ron and Emily in Blind Man and the vocal harmony-fest from Jon and Nigel in Old Guitar. Harley Boys was a more-or-less deliberate attempt to escape the downbeat, and exults in the escapism of the open road as expressed to Nigel by a certain London cabbie. We couldn't have done this without Brian's driving beat and Tony's fluid bass. Rock on guys!

What on earth is Big Casino all about? Well, there was this really bad movie, with a truly dreadful script... Nigel decided to extract the Michael. The joke however is on him in the very silly Llama Rock, as he's a bit confused about Llama anatomy. Both feature some 'extrovert' keyboards and drums from Andy and Brian respectively. Nearly and Counting Down are both reflections on the reality of middle-age and confront issues we must all face, but not without aspects of hope and encouragement. They are quite different musically though - Nearly was possibly the most difficult of all to produce with its unusual rhythms and complex orchestration, while Counting Down is a simple song in the band's original style.

Manhattan Blue is the latest in a long line of 'road' songs from Nigel, inspired by his extensive business travels and his fascination with people in motion. Best to listen to this one on headphones in a darkened room to get the full effect...

Finally, Walk Away represents the experience of a sadly growing number of mid-life adults and is a departure from past compositions and methods of the band by being a piano piece from Jon (performed by Andy) with words added by Nigel.

All in all, we hope there is something for everyone in this album and we hope you enjoy it. Copies are still available from Ron, Jon and Nigel. We'll even sign it for a small fee ....