Barclay James Harvest Album Portfolio

Album Portfolio

Mæstoso - One Drop In A Dry World

One Drop In A Dry World cover design

CD: Eclectic Discs ECLD 1008, 17th May 2004
2CD: Limited edition with Second Splash bonus disc, Eclectic ECLCD 1009, 17th May, 2004


Tracklisting



Recording Details

Recording Studios:
The Chapel Studios, Lincolnshire.

Recording Dates:
13 days in November 2003

Producer:
Woolly Wolstenholme



Musicians

Woolly Wolstenholme (voice, Mellotron, acoustic and electric 12-string guitars, keyboards, percussion, toy bugle (Habitat £10.99)
Craig Fletcher (voice, 4-string/5-string/fretless bass, double bubble, percussion, corkscrew)
Kevin Whitehead (drums, percussion, Dark Lord of the Rumcha Box)
Steve Broomhead (voice, electric and acoustic guitars, Japan banjo, didgeridoo, balalaika, musical saw)



Sleeve

Designed by Woolly. The cover photograph was taken by Woolly on location at Jasper Conran's private swimming pool in the south of France.


The Bells, THE BELLS

Lots of clanking and clattering; retro sounds from a Roland D50 keyboard and more than a whiff of "Ra". It sets the stage for ...




Blood and Bones
(Tod in Venedig / Requiem / Reprise)

I paid a visit to the Körperwelten (Bodyworlds) exhibition and I was stunned! Out of this stunnedness came the first green shoots of "Blood and Bones". Somehow, though, it became hijacked by Death In Venice and Nicolas Roeg's Don't Look Now. I'm particularly fond of the solo violin in the "Requiem".

Lyrics:

Standing on the Bridge of Sighs
And looking down, the water's out
We've had our run, there is no doubt
We're all washed up with the tide

Still standing on the Bridge of Sighs
Our cash is blown, it's all been spent
In every way we only rent
We're all washed up with the tide

Seems to me there's more to this than meets the eye
Something more than just the life we're living
Without a soul, we're nothing more than
Blood and Bones, Blood and Bones, Blood and Bones

Hanging from the Bridge of Sighs
The whole thing's gone and can't be had
From "Don't Look Now" that something bad
Is all washed out with the tide

Now falling from the Bridge of Sighs
The paper only masks the crack
Like Thomas Mann's von Aschenbach
We're all washed out with the tide

Seems to me there's more to this than meets the eye
Something more than just this life we're living
Without a soul, we're nothing more than
Blood and Bones, Blood and Bones, Blood and Bones

Requiem Aeternam. Requiem, Requiem

Stuart J. Wolstenholme
© 2004 Eclectic Publishing




A Waiting Game

One day in October I was slumped in a bus shelter in New Oxford Street during the most glorious autumnal display when it suddenly hit me - Christmas is here! ... or so the shops would have us believe. The Festive bandwagon was already rolling and the tills were ringing their merry Xmas chimes. If Christ ever did return he'd have his work cut out removing the money-lenders from the Temples of consumerism. Dark strings usher it in and a sky-saw guitar interlude leads us to the oboe solo. "The First Nowell" didn't dawn on me till we were in the studio, but the line, "was to certain poor shepherds ..." just summed it up.

Lyrics:

Within October's golden glow
There is no sign of winter's snow
Yet Slade scream out from every store
A holly wreath on every door
No time to play a waiting game

The shining windows all attest
Three hundred shopping days are left
No childish innocence
Depressed we spend our way to happiness
And not for us a waiting game

Now everything just feels so wrong
The second coming won't be long
'Til then we'll play a waiting game

Stuart J. Wolstenholme
© 2004 Eclectic Publishing




It's You

A song from the early '80s - originally written for the TV teen drama S.W.A.L.K. The 'Sixties Mix' used here has all the bizarre hallmarks - drums on one side, bass on the other - but you'll have to imagine the groovy chicks swinging along for yourselves.

Lyrics:

You sit there in your room
The frozen moments fading
Some other's point of view
Can't be so all-pervading

Then, when you're down on your knees
Needing a helping hand
If I have to I'll make it clear
Will you finally understand
It's you

Why waste your precious time
on your bizarre position
Blame all the things you are
Upon your indecision

So when you're out on the street
With nothing to call your own
There's no way to make it sweet
It's the truth that you've always known
It's you

Now can you work it all out,
Who is landing you in the drink
I hope I don't have to shout
It's much closer to home than you think
It's you

Stuart J. Wolstenholme
© 2004 Eclectic Publishing




Souk

Soup! Or more accurately, Goat Tagine with Aubergine and Couscous. This started life as a Steve Broomhead instrumental called "Miró" (you know: Miró, Miró on the wall!), but after I added some mad organ and percussion it ended up being this picture postcard from North Africa. Exotic/erotic? It ends with a minor 9th and lashings of cinnamon and cumin.

Lyrics:

Out in the blazing sun
Bedouins make their way
Wherever the desert runs
Everyday, fading away

But here where the town begins
And where the desert ends
Tribes with their kith and kin
All descend with money to spend
At night when the stars reveal their glory
The lights all tell another story
In the Souk

When we from our island home
Here for the camel ride
Finally leave for Rome
And are gone - the heat gets turned on!
At night when the stars reveal their glory
The lights all tell another story
In the Souk

Girls bathe in asses' milk
Then out to the market square
Dressed in their finest silk
And they wear gold in their hair
At night when the stars reveal their glory
The lights all tell another story
In the Souk

Steve Broomhead / Stuart J. Wolstenholme
© 2004 Eclectic Publishing




One Drop In A Dry World

Do you remember your first illicit slug of whisky from that bottle in the sideboard? Made you silly, didn't it? Now, alas, it's more likely to be the whole bottle ... Imagine, if you will, that both the band and the orchestra have very much overdone it the night before and are hungover, fragile, queasy. Oh God, never again.

Lyrics:

Prologue by Mr. C. P. Fletcher (Reg. THESP)

We had a ball of it, but we drank all of it
Now we sleep a dreamless sleep
We had our fill of it, now here's the bill
For today we pay for yesterday

One drop in a dry world
One drop in a dry, dry world
One drop in a dry world
One drop that used to blight is no longer quite enough

Our veins are full of it, and here's the rub
For the chances are we went too far
We had a fix on it, but what a mix!
Was it Shiraz, Zinfandel, Lager, Gin?

One drop in a dry world
One drop in a dry, dry world
One drop in a dry world
One drop that made us tight is no longer quite enough

Stuart J. Wolstenholme
© 2004 Eclectic Publishing




A.N.S.S.

Lyrics:

We're off on our holidays again
And dancing in the street
Doing our utmost to offend
Everyone we meet
And if our urge to write has gone
We've got a phone to text it on
Nothing ... Nothing ... Nothing ... Nothing
This is a nothing summer song

Every club vibrates with sound
The raving's at its peak
We bring a chaos to this town
Seven days a week
And if our urge to write has gone
We've got a phone to text it on
Nothing ... Nothing ... Nothing ... Nothing
This is a nothing summer song
Nothing ... Nothing ... Nothing ... Nothing
This is a nothing summer song

Nothing ... Nothing ... Nothing ... Nothing ... Nothing ... Nothing
Nothing ... Nothing ... Nothing ... Nothing ... Nothing ...
Nothing ... Nothing ... Nothing ... Nothing ...
Nothing ... Nothing ... Nothing ...
Nothing ... Nothing ...
Nothing ...

Nothing.

Stuart J. Wolstenholme
© 2004 Eclectic Publishing




The End Of The Road

Lyrics:

Here we lie
In broken body's sweat
Still waiting for a wave to come we know won't be coming
And still we try
To swim this world of wet
And reach the shore although we're sure
The river is flowing
To the end of the road

Dreams we had
But not the dreams of night
The dreams of day that drift away
Without us knowing
Oh and promises
Those birds of fleeting flight
And as they fly they can't deny
That where we are going
Is the end of the road,

The end of the road
The end of the road
Pretending we are blind
To every sign that points us
To the end of the road.

Stuart J. Wolstenholme
© 2004 Eclectic Publishing




Explorers

A.D. 1480: a Tavern in Plymouth - where an enthusiastic (but dim) young mariner is regaling his coterie with tales of his soon-to-be derring-do. All tropical islands and native girls in his head. But the awful place depicted in the opening and closing bleakness is much closer to the reality. And as befits a song about the High Seas, the strings finish on ... a high C!

Lyrics:

Upon the Fifth of May we set our sails
It is departure day.
And if the gentle winds prevailing
Let us go, we're on our way
But were we to fail then you will make
Martyrs of us all
And tell of our fate
At every evening fall

Within a year we'll duly chance
Upon an island warm and kind
And lying in a paradise
We'll think of kindred left behind
But if we just sail on
To the horizon
Beyond the blue skies
It's then we truly prove our worth
By sailing off the earth

Upon the Fifth of May ...

Stuart J. Wolstenholme
© 2004 Eclectic Publishing




2 a.m.

A miserable "Hymn" for insomniacs everywhere. Two lines borrowed from dear Gerard Manley Hopkins plus an idea lifted from Hofmannstahl's libretto for R. Strauss' Elektra set me off on this one.

Lyrics:

There's nothing here to make a sound
Only the rain that's pouring down
And even that won't make time pass
For all its tapping on the glass
I try to while the hours away
Rake through the ashes of the day
But end up where I first began
It's 2 a.m.

Can't hear the ticking of the clock
It seems for me all time has stopped
Like grey smoke in a greyer sky
Here's where our wrecked past purpose lies
Reviewing things we said in haste
But all my effort seems a waste
I go through everything again
It's 2 a.m.
It's 2 a.m.

All thoughts of pleasure (not of pain)
Softly dissolving with the rain
An endless jigsaw that just mocks
Lacking a picture on the box
No stars, no moon and what is more
No dawn to creep around the door
Some things to bother lesser men
It's 2 a.m.

Outside, the city is a lake
A million people lie awake
All hanging from their cliffs of fall
While others never wake at all
Are Tony Blair's eyes open wide
Through David Kelly's suicide?
It's 2 a.m.
It's 2 a.m.

Stuart J. Wolstenholme
© 2004 Eclectic Publishing




The Starving People of the World
All Thank You for your Time

It's Us!

Lyrics:

The starving people of the world
all thank you for your time

Stuart J. Wolstenholme
© 2004 Eclectic Publishing




Carpet
(A four gong conclusion)

Go out with a bang! (well, four actually.) The magic carpet does indeed take off - in rounds of seven - and then, via a short whole-tone section ("Festival!") we hear, as forewarned, the horns announce the theme from "Sunday Bells". Then tons of faffing about in F# minor brings it to a close.

Lyrics:

It was a magic carpet ride
But all your deeds were fratricide
You're like a train stuck on the track
You can't go forward; Won't go back
Was it the money, was it fame
That made you play a different game?
And now the sands of time have run
No faces in your setting sun

Stuart J. Wolstenholme
© 2004 Eclectic Publishing



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