“Sonic searching mysteries, absorbing feelings meant for me”.
The first line, of the first song, of the first solo album which began in July, 2014 and was completed in December, 2016. ‘Barlow House’ was recorded in stages as and when time allowed in between life commitments, other projects, travel and when the right level of positive energy was felt.
Looking back it actually started in 1991 with the first band ‘Hard man in a Vest’.
Whilst playing punk and rock covers the first attempt at writing original material began and subsequently led to years of performing with bands such as ‘Lunch With Bethany’, ‘Rollin Over’, ‘Grasp’, ‘Tommy Atkins’ and ‘Sandpilots’ always showcasing self-penned songs.
The songs for 'Barlow House' evolved from ideas recorded on a mobile phone and were based on a few chords, a vocal line, a bass line or a drum pattern. Nothing was certain and nothing fixed. The ideas developed as they were recorded, they were edited, expanded, shortened, trashed and re-started, mixed, re-mixed, mastered and re-mastered and all in the small personal studio in a loft in Chelmsford called ‘AtticSound’.
With the exception of amazing additional guitar work on ‘Tell Me What Have I Done’ played by a long term close friend James Prudence, the album was a real solo affair in so far as performance, engineering, producing, mixing and mastering
the new record it was different. It was a step away from the hands on faders and engineering and it was away from the personal studio.
it was released on the 8th of February 2019 entitled '5 Days in 1979' and was a collaboration of friends which after 5 days in Nashville, tennessee turned into a band.
We had a plan, a purpose and a sole goal. To take songs written by Spen and produce an awesome record that sounded just like a band playing ‘live’ in a room.
There would be one track per instrument and no overdubs. One track would be completely live. The EP would be recorded analogue to two inch tape and it would be recorded and mixed at ‘Welcome to 1979’.
The tracks were demo'd, they were rehearsed, we flew 4000 miles, they were recorded, mixed, mastered and released.
We got it right.