Posts Tagged ‘Pete de Freitas’

One of the most acclaimed British rockers from the 1980’s, this legendary band formed in Liverpool in 1978 and were forefathers of the neo-psychedelic movement. Their line up consisted of vocalist Ian McCulloch, guitarist Will Sergeant, bass player Les Pattinson and drummer Pete de Freitas, eventually replacing the original drum machine. The band’s cult status eventually waned with mainstream success in 1983 after they scored a UK top 10 hit with “The Cutter” and attendant album “Porcupine” which hit second spot in the UK.  1984’s classic album “Ocean Rain” is considered a landmark post-punk release, featuring the lead single “Killing Moon.” The band split in 1988 but regrouped in 1997, releasing an album in 2014 . The band’s popularity never quite made the same impact in the US as it did in Europe so they are ripe for rediscovery for anyone interested in bands such as Suede, Radiohead, Arcade Fire, Blur, Interpol and Oasis.

Track Listing:

Side A

  1. She Cracked (Live April 1985)
  2. It’s All Over Now Baby Blue (Live April 1985)
  3. Soul Kitchen (Live April 1985)
  4. Action Woman (Live April 1985)
  5. Paint it Black (Live April 1985)

Side B

  1. Run, Run, Run (Live April 1985)
  2. Friction (Live April 1985)
  3. Crocodiles (Live April 1985)
  4. Heroin (Live July 1983)
  5. Do It Clean (Live July 1983)
  • Brand new collection of their legendary live material recorded in Sweden in 1985. Includes classic Rock N Roll covers of legendary tunes by the Doors, Rolling Stones, Velvet Underground, Television and more available on vinyl for the first time. Many of the tracks from Sweden were recorded live for Swedish National Radio at the Karen Club. Also included here is a legendary extended version of “Do It Clean” recorded live in concert at the Royal Albert Hall in 1983.
  • Each LP is individually numbered and strictly limited based on pre orders
  • 1LP, 180g, black vinyl pressed at Record Industry comes in a single sleeve aqueous-gloss, old school tip-on Stoughton sleeve with brand new artwork and hard stock insert with never before seen photos and liner notes by guitarist, Will Sergeant.

Echo and the Bunnymen
I’ve always said that The Killing Moon is one of the greatest song ever written. The Killing Moon is more than just a song. It’s a psalm, almost hymnal. It’s about everything, from birth to death to eternity and God – whatever that is – and the eternal battle between fate and the human will. It contains the answer to the meaning of life. It’s my “To be or not to be …”

Singer Songwriter Ian McCulloch  says I love it all the more because I didn’t pore over it for days on end. One morning, I just sat bolt upright in bed with this line in my head: “Fate up against your will. Through the thick and thin. He will wait until you give yourself to him.” You don’t dream things like that and remember them. That’s why I’ve always half credited the lyric to God. It’s never happened before or since. I got up and started working the chords out. I played David Bowie’s Space Oddity backwards, then started messing around with the chords. By the time I’d finished, it sounded nothing like Space Oddity.

The rest of the lyrics came quickly, almost as if I knew them already. The title and a lot of the astronomical imagery, such as “your sky all hung with jewels”, came about because, as a kid, I’d always loved The Sky at Night and Star Trek, and I remembered the moon landing. I was up all night wishing I had a telescope.

The song was recorded in Bath and Liverpool. I wasn’t happy with the drums or the way it sounded in Bath, so I refused to sing on it. Plus I’d got a cold after staying out one night with Adam Peters, the cello player. So me and Pete de Freitas, our drummer, went to Amazon studios in Kirkby and finished it with Gil Norton mixing. I got home around 9am, slightly the worse for wear, and [former wife] Lorraine had a cob on with me for being out all night. I played her the song and said, “That’s what we’ve been doing”, and she cried.

Will Sergeant, guitarist
On a trip to Russia we visited a museum of tractor parts – and came back with that mandolin sound
For me, it was a trip to Russia that fed into The Killing Moon. Me and Les Pattinson, our bassist, knew some people at the polytechnic in Liverpool who were going, and they said we could come. It was £200 for 10 days, including flights. We went to Leningrad, then this place called Kazam, where nobody from outside Russia had been since 1943 or something. We went to a museum full of tractor parts and this very strange party organised by the young communists where everyone wore pressed Bri-nylon flares. But there was a lot of music and we came back full of ideas of Russian balalaika bands, which Les used for the middle of the song – this rumbling, mandolin-style bass thing.

During the recording, we went for a curry round the corner, and when we came back the producer had found this twangy thing on tape that I’d done tuning the guitar. He insisted it go in the song. It became the best-known guitar line in our entire catalogue.

Mac might have come up with the lyrics and all that, but it was definitely a team effort. The strings are just Adam Peters on cello and the producer on some state-of-the-art keyboard thing he had. Mac says he suggested that Pete play the drums with brushes, but I know Pete had already been inspired by the gentler, jazzier way of playing on Dave Brubeck’s Take Five, which we’d all been listening to.

I still love The Killing Moon. The lyrics are mysterious and it’s open to interpretation. It’s got a timeless quality. Years after it was a hit, we got an email saying this bloke wanted to use the song in a film, Donnie Darko, which we didn’t think would go anywhere, so accepted a one-off £3,000. Then when the director did the director’s cut he replaced The Killing Moon with Never Tear Us Apart by INXS. Aren’t some people knobheads?

• Echo and the Bunnymen are on tour from 22 May. Details: bunnymen.com