As usual I don’t update this as much as I wish. Spent a great week in Reykjavik with Paul and Elisabeth. Got to visit Kaffismiðjan every day (well, I hope it’s open Sundays next time I visit).
Did some recording at both Greenhouse (where I worked for a bit as an intern) and at Sundlaugin, the “other” studio. Got my fair share of suitably krútt overdubs: vibraphone, celeste, dulcitone, harmonium, etc. With luck I will have the taste not to use them all. The record is coming along but it’s still a bit like a dug up sidewalk, everything in pieces, needing reassembly before being fit for humans.
Off to London for a night, then back home to Oz.
Leaving Antwerp, on the way to Reykjavik via Amsterdam. The chap next to me has fallen asleep and has his hand on the comma key, seems to be writing an email to a lot of empty recipients! Not exactly the speediest WiFi on the Thalys train, but nice that it’s there.
Anyway, spent a pleasant few days in Belgium, Janos and I had a fairly decent rehearsal yesterday for Australia, decided on some repertoire. Had dinner at his fiancée’s parents last night, saw a sort-of-Americana-ish concert the previous night, general hanging out and eating well. Croissants for breakfast. Actually, I have a “croissant for the road” here which I’m planning to consume soon even thought it will be my third for the day.
In Reykjavik will catch up with Moonshot crew – Sam, Josh, Henry and Rhys – which is a fortuitous coincidence, albeit one I knew about when I planned the trip. Am staying with my dear friends Paul and Elisabeth, although this fact they seemed to have forgotten – fortunately I think it will OK. The trendy hostel KEX didn’t have any rooms free else I would have stayed there (not sure if I really fancy staying at the Radisson with all the other computer types, or even if there are any rooms left).
I plan to record some prepared piano, harmonium, etc for the ensemble album here but not sure how practical that will be: firstly, those instruments are at 440 rather than 442, and I may end up needing to rerecord some parts in Melbourne. There was a great portable pipe organ in Knokke which would have been fantastic to record Schlusshymne on, but I didn’t know (next time maybe I will travel with some microphones).
Just about to stop at Rotterdam, then on to Schipol. Did I mention last time how you can see the Belgian highway lights from space? And that you know when you’re crossing the border because they just stop? It’s a funny thing. There’s a beautiful reddish glow at dusk as they warm up.
The photo below was taken in Brugges.
Really enjoyed Oslo, lots of lovely people, people seem less “cool” than Melbourne (in a good way). Last night we had dinner at Wendy and Håvard’s, with our usual two our game of Settlers of Catan. Have been recording the ensemble which went well, although I learned some logistical lessons which may influence how I make the next record. Been nice getting to know Jan Erik a little better, very lovely and relaxed chap. Len is currently recording his solo guitar record which is of course sounding amazing. Was a lot of fun to have Janos here (as well as incredibly useful in the control room). We spoke about doing some Americana-inspired trio album in the future, that could be good.
Next stop: Antwerp.
Len and I ended up at this trivia night by the canal. I thought this chap looked like Enlai (St Michael’s alumnus, architect, many mutual friends). It was. Between Danny sitting next to Manfred Eicher’s daughter on the plane, and bumping into Emma Jardine on the Paris Metro, this has been a trip full of coincidences.
Haven’t had a lot of time to update this owing to tiring days recording and rehearsing but it has been a lot of fun to have Len, Danny and JZ here. Nice to see Jan Erik again, that’s a piano sound to die for. I think we got some good takes down, will sort through it over the coming weeks and hopefully we will have an album!
Len is making some spaghetti alla puttanesca right now. Between him and Jonathan the catering has been incredible. Ahem.
Been hanging out twice-daily at this amazing cafe/bar called Fuglen. Scandinavian furniture (all for sale, apparently), great coffee (beans from Tim Wendelboe), nice staff. Went there for a drink last night with Ali who is leading the string section for the ensemble recording.
Below is a photo of Jonathan and myself after our recording, in the studio.
This is the view from our apartment. It’s a beautiful spring day. Jonathan is here, and – after some hours – so is his bass. Have caught up with loads of people: Brede, Irena, Adrian, Magnus, etc, which is lovely, forget how many good people there are here. Had a very tasty (if not cheap) tapas dinner on Friday night; last night, more falafel and that sort of fare.
Last night: party celebrating arrival of friend’s cousin’s balcony (made me think perhaps I could construct something similar at home; he had to climb out the window to get to it). Excellent there is good coffee here too (although the place does not open until 11am today).
We are going to try and have a little rehearsal this afternoon, before Danny arrives in the evening.
That is all. (Edited to remove repeating myself. I must have not been very awake.)