Joining the dots between surf rock, Jacques Brel, doo-wop and beyond" BBC Introducing, The Quay Sessions
The Strange Blue Dreams launched their self-titled debut album to a full house at Glasgow's Cottiers Theatre in October. On the back of great reviews in the national press and a storming Quay Sessions set for BBC Introducing (currently on TV and radio on the BBC Iplayer) the band are currently in the studio working on their next album before heading out in tour in the spring in their second UK tour in support of their new album.
This collection of songs passionately distill the various golden ages of popular song into a unique and compelling new sound that "reimagines the roots of rock n' roll" (Americana UK). The record combines "menacing surf-noir with skiffling eastern rock n' roll from a parallel universe" (Medicine Music), and cements their position as "old timey mysterons" (The National).
United by a love of old time high fidelity 20th Century pop music that ranges from High School Doo-Wop to Dixieland and Tin Pan Alley, their sound centers around an admiration for maverick song-writing be it Ennio Morricone, Richard Hawley or Roy Orbison. Having been described by Vic Galloway (BBC) as "a Glaswegian version of the legendary pop, rock n' roll and country Nashville A-team session aces of the late 1950’s”, The Strange Blue Dreams have long been immersed in touring and making records for other people as the go-to players in Glasgow's vibrant underground roots music scene.
Hailing from Glasgow, a city where a band can live and work in a way that has almost completely died out elsewhere in the UK, and completely removed from the whims of the mainstream, the five piece spent years on the city's discerning live circuit, years which have left their music with a powerful immediacy and energy. They released a single in their own right which was immediately listed on the BBC Scotland weekly rotation charts and landed them a Glastonbury slot. Encouraged by this they proceeded to record more songs any way they could. Wangling free studio time where possible, or going DIY in the small mechanics garage they rehearse in with the help of George Miller (of legendary beat group The Kaisers), they finished their debut album whilst still playing six nights a week. This schedule included hosting and curating a stage at the BBC 6 Music festival when it landed in Glasgow recently and opening for touring acts likeCW Stoneking, JD Mcpherson and Glasvegas.
Defined by soaring vocal harmonies, dance beats from New Orleans and the rhythm sections of RCA and the other great Record labels of the mid 20th Century, the songs of singer and guitarist Dave Addison are brought to life by the band's atmospheric arrangements. Double bass and mandolin, instruments often associated with americana or folk music are used to make surf music and 50's film noir soundtracks blend seamlessly on 'Reverberatin’ Love', the group's first single. The guitars play balkan melodies and spaghetti western themes alongside their hot r&b and twanging jazz, and in the case of songs like 'Electricity', use Joe Meek's approach to create an otherworldly pop music from rock n' roll.
Chris Blackmore - Holy Smokes Records