Thursday, January 31, 2008

The Church - A Box of Birds


BOX OF BIRDS, the Church's twelfth album, is a collection of covers. The Church puts its all into these tracks, originated by the likes of Alex Harvey, the Monkees, Iggy Pop, Hawkwind, and others, and, though remaining fairly faithful to the originals, it manages to infuse each one with its own particular touch.Standouts include: George Harrison's "It's All Too Much" (also including lyrical nods to a couple of other songs), which gets a vital, uptempo run-through, complete with peals of feedback; a wonderful reading of Ultravox's "Hiroshima Mon Amour," that simultaneously recalls the glory days of Euro-pop and New Wave, while retaining the Church's own psychedelic leanings; Television's "Friction," which provides Marty Willson-Piper and Peter Koppes with an excellent opportunity to pit their twin guitar interplay against that of one of their primary influences; and an epic and reverential take on Neil Young's "Cortez the Killer," a song that the band has long performed live. More than just an entertaining peek at the Church's influences, BOX OF BIRDS is more than worthy of the band's vast catalogue.

Tracks
The Faith Healer (7:35) [Alex Harvey]
It's All Too Much (6:10) [The Beatles]
Hiroshima Mon Amour (4:27) [Ultravox]
The Porpoise Song (4:28) [The Monkees]
Decadence (9:14) [Kevin Ayers]
The Endless Sea (4:33) [Iggy Pop]
Friction (5:11) [Television]
All the Young Dudes (4:10) [Mott The Hoople]
Silver Machine (4:57) [Hawkwind]
Cortez the Killer (11:08) [Neil Young]

Credits

The Church are Steven Kilbey, Peter Koppes, Tim Powles, Marty Willson-PiperRecorded and Mixed by Dave Trump and Tim Powles@ the Blue Room Studios, Gävle, Swedenexcept for "All The Young Dudes" and "Silver Machine"recorded @ Karmic Hit Studios, Sydney, AustraliaMastered by Jay @ Node Mastering, London
The preliminary track listing for this album was:
1. Cortez the Killer [Neil Young]
2. Life's A Gas [Marc Bolan & T. Rex]
3. Friction [Television]
4. Silver Machine [Hawkwind]
5. All The Young Dudes [Mott the Hoople]
6. Don't Fear The Reaper [Blue Oyster Cult]
7. Ritz [Cockney Rebel]
8. Venus In Furs [The Velvet Underground]
9. In Every Dreamhome A Heartache [Roxy Music]
10. It's All Too Much [The Beatles]
11. Desdemona [T-Rex]
12. The Porpoise Song [The Monkeys]

Eight different covers and the CD artwork were designed and submitted by fans.

Disc 1

Disc 2

4 comments:

Hank said...

Very cool. Thanks Bruce. And recorded in Sweden to boot... in Gävle of all places. Why anyone would want to go there and record is beyond me... maybe they wanted peace and quiet...

bruce said...

always a pleasure mate

bruce

sawbird said...

"It's All Too Much" - what a perfect choice for the Church to cover. I never noticed before but Steve Kilbey's voice has a bit of George in it. I like the nod to "Sorrow" (Bowie Pinups = Box of Birds) reference he throws in. The Church is one of those rare bands who've never looked foolish.
Thanks for the post - great blog, absolute classics. If you're missing anything, let me know and I'll post.

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