"New" work? Beautiful Country

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"New" work? Beautiful Country

Postby natsume on Fri Sep 22, 2017 7:22 am

Surprised nobody here has commented, two gorgeous songs on Soundcloud....
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Re: "New" work?

Postby Blemished on Fri Sep 22, 2017 7:40 am

Only just spotted this on twitter. Thank you.

Modern Interior was released before to raise money for the Japanese Tsunami I think, but 'Beautiful Country' is entirely new. Seems that it's from the work with Joan Wasser. Great to hear this - perhaps the most conventional song he's released in a long time - and I don't mean that in a bad way! Very beautiful, country-tinged track. His voice sounds amazing on this.

https://soundcloud.com/user-516495290/beautiful-country-rough-mix
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Re: "New" work? Beautiful Country

Postby javier on Fri Sep 22, 2017 11:36 am

Yes, great to hear his voice again, even though recorded 6 years ago it feels very fresh - a completely different style than we've ever heard before.

To read his comment "For reasons I can’t explain, I’ve been unable to release the track..." is quite intriguing. If it were a contractual reason, a personal reason, a song/recording quality reason, whatever - it would be straightforward to explain. So I really can't imagine what his comment might mean.
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Re: "New" work? Beautiful Country

Postby ob8 on Fri Sep 22, 2017 3:42 pm

i had a shudder down my spine hearing David singing this. Most welcome and a reminder (not that we need one) just what we have all missed too much.

If any of Davids daughters read this please nag him for more rough mixes. :D
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Re: "New" work? Beautiful Country

Postby Quiet Visitor on Fri Sep 22, 2017 4:30 pm

Fine song. The string-arrangement reminds me of some Nick Drake-songs, although this is indeed a lot more country-like pop.
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Re: "New" work? Beautiful Country

Postby darkerbird on Sat Sep 23, 2017 1:45 pm

The wonderful Beautiful Country appears to have been taken down.....I assume Joan As Policewoman called the cops......☹️
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Re: "New" work? Beautiful Country

Postby Halloway on Sun Sep 24, 2017 5:39 am

It's back up.
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Re: "New" work? Beautiful Country

Postby Tin Bird on Sun Sep 24, 2017 7:24 am

It is an OK song... it is good to hear him sing again
When I cannot sing my heart...I can only speak my mind...
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Re: "New" work? Beautiful Country

Postby Foales Arishes on Sun Sep 24, 2017 7:48 am

Thank you Natsume... Gosh, it's nice to hear his voice once again and its a good song, in fact it's 'catchy' a 'pop song' and one that when I play it a couple more times will likely end up an ear worm, with that title refrain going around in my head. However, I much prefer Modern Interior which also has a wonderful vocal, but brims with atmosphere and does not have that Americana twang... although there is no actual 'twang', but it comes close :wink: ... Country music is really not my thing.

An album with this sound would not interest me much, not that it's likely as this was a one-off collaboration was it not?
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Re: "New" work? Beautiful Country

Postby Blemished on Sun Sep 24, 2017 12:14 pm

It definitely is quite the ear worm, Foales...I was kicking myself for not having taken a copy before it was taken down - but very glad to see it up there and it has now been safely captured for posterity!

I can't think why he would have issues with putting it up - maybe there are writing credits, recording costs etc that might come into it. No idea whether soundcloud pays anything per stream for example.

Modern Interior is very much more the real Sylvian - and have always really liked that track. But it is really nice to hear him sing something in a different vein and - perhaps most of all - to be signing in quite a joyful relaxed way. A lot of his other more recent work seems to require a darker style. This is a much easier vocal style, more like Gone To Earth or Snow Borne Sorrow. And funnily enough I don't mind the C&W style in this case - it feels authentic, probably due to the other musicians, and it doesn't make me feel uncomfortable in the way that some of the more easy-listening tracks on say Dead Bees, used to do. It could pass for a Walker Brothers song come to think of it.
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Re: "New" work? Beautiful Country

Postby Foales Arishes on Sun Sep 24, 2017 12:46 pm

Blemished wrote:It definitely is quite the ear worm, Foales...I was kicking myself for not having taken a copy before it was taken down - but very glad to see it up there and it has now been safely captured for posterity!

I can't think why he would have issues with putting it up - maybe there are writing credits, recording costs etc that might come into it. No idea whether soundcloud pays anything per stream for example.

Modern Interior is very much more the real Sylvian - and have always really liked that track. But it is really nice to hear him sing something in a different vein and - perhaps most of all - to be signing in quite a joyful relaxed way. A lot of his other more recent work seems to require a darker style. This is a much easier vocal style, more like Gone To Earth or Snow Borne Sorrow. And funnily enough I don't mind the C&W style in this case - it feels authentic, probably due to the other musicians, and it doesn't make me feel uncomfortable in the way that some of the more easy-listening tracks on say Dead Bees, used to do. It could pass for a Walker Brothers song come to think of it.


The belated release must have been due to legal/political/contractual reasons I would imagine... I remember this collaboration being talked about (him and Joan) but I can't recall what it was for... Was it to be an album of hers with contributions from DS or was it more of a joint project?... or just this single track?... did anything else come from the project if not?

It's lightness is refreshing, and I do - with repeated listens - really like it [it's one of the most catchy things he's ever done]. I don't think its really a 'country' track, but it does have a very American vibe, which comes as a surprise after his output for the past ten years or so. It does feel authentic and not contrived in any way; actually its far less mannered than a lot of his solo work.

Its certainly a contrast against Modern Interior, which for some reason had completely past me by until this post :cry: I would have gladly donated to the cause it was made for, but that section of the site has been closed for some time. Was there ever an HD download available?

Its a short, but amazing track...
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Re: "New" work? Beautiful Country

Postby baht habit on Sun Sep 24, 2017 5:01 pm

Hearing this track has pretty much confirmed the assumptions I had back in 2011. These particular musicians were ill suited to accompany Sylvian. And I can't help but believe that Sylvian came to that very same conclusion while working out arrangements for his musical ideas - with this incompatibility being the main reason why he subsequently nixed the project. I recall being relieved when that decision was announced.
"Beautiful Country" obviously has great promise as a song, with detailed lyrics and pleasing melodies. But the overall feel of the rhythm track is horrid, especially where tempo is concerned. The drummer is plodding during the verses, and then he is artlessly rushing through the bridges.
I could envision a lineup with Steve Jansen and Bill Frisell bringing their skill and professionalism to this song, lifting it up to the high quality it deserves.


Re: Joan & David
by baht habit on Thu Dec 29, 2011 8:40 pm

silentwings wrote:
parker kindred and fred cash
Any reaction to the names mentioned above?

Those players usually work as Wasser's rhythm section...fairly nondescript and innocuous musicians, if you ask me. I'm sure that many fans will welcome some sort of return to structured music for Sylvian, and I wouldn't be opposed to such a project if the results are intriguing... but I was still sort of hoping that this particular project would find Sylvian pushing the boundaries for Wasser - I personally find her musical output to be quite mundane. Instead, she will most likely be carefully set in her comfort zone with musicians she is used to working with.
If he merely follows her lead and adapts to her style, then I'm sure that I'll find nothing of interest amongst the byproduct of these writing and recording sessions.
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Re: "New" work? Beautiful Country

Postby Tin Bird on Sun Sep 24, 2017 5:46 pm

No doubt that it was obvious that it wasn't Steve on drums. It sounds like it was recorded w a single mic in the room as well... I figured it was a demo though, so no big deal either way...
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Re: "New" work? Beautiful Country

Postby Foales Arishes on Mon Sep 25, 2017 8:42 am

Tin Bird wrote: I figured it was a demo though, so no big deal either way...


It does indeed sound like a demo, rather than a finished, fully produced track... the drums and rhythm guitar get on my nerves the more I listen :roll: ... the strings are quite nice though, and I must admit I am slightly hooked on listening to it; there is some melodic joy to be had here :P

Its interesting that he's started putting these tracks out on Soundcloud.. I wonder what, if anything, will be next.
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Re: "New" work? Beautiful Country

Postby Blemished on Mon Sep 25, 2017 2:15 pm

Maybe nothing will be next and this is his way of saying thank you and sayanora...I really hope not!

I actually think this track is beautifully recorded and far from being demo-like - certainly hearing through my speakers. Like it or not it has that classic, warm Lou Reed sound. I think it's a little disingenuous to call it a rough mix - maybe it could be polished some more but not that much probably - the strings sound very finished. It's not mastered though - levels peak at -4.4 bfs and most mastered tracks would come up to -0.2 - and that can make a big difference in getting that final polish.

I can see why Baht doesn't like it - and it is not my normal kind of thing - but it just has something joyous about it which I'm enjoying and find that it's stuck in my head.
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