Saturday, May 30, 2015

submarine bells

The Chills would effloresce with the heavenly pop of this elsatic expansion.   The legendary New Zealand band had begun in 1980 with bandleader Martin Phillipps and his sister Rachel with Jane Dodd, Peter Gutteridge, Alan Haig.   There would be numerous lineup changes with Frazer Batts, Terry Moore, and Martyn Bull coming into the fold.  When Bull became ill, the group went on hiatus and almost changed their name.  A a compilation of early singles 'Kaleidoscope World'  and their first album 'Brave Words' made them local superstars and architects of the Dunedin sound.   Peter Allison, Martin Kean, and Caroline Easther would all come and go before they graduated from New Zealand's Flying Nun Records to Warner Brothers subsidiary Slash Records for 'Submarine Bells'.    The album was recorded at Jacobs Studios in Surrey with producer Gary Smith and engineer Paul Apted.   The sessions featured   Martin Phillipps on vocals and guitar;  Justin Harwood on bass and background vocals;   James Stephenson on drums and percussion;  Andy Todd on keyboards and background vocals;  and Donna Savage on background vocals.

Phillipps would express at the time:  “The belief in the band at an industry level and at a media level has been incredible. It’s not like it happens to every band and everyone thinks that they’re the most amazing group. The indication was that the Chills were something very special with commercial potential as opposed to very interesting but hopelessly unmarketable. People really thought there was something going to happen with us.”

'Submarine Bells' became a smash success at home, going to number one on the New Zealand album chart and winning Album of the Year at the New Zealand Music Awards. 

"Heavenly Pop Hit" was their only chart entry in the UK, going to number ninety-seven.  Likewise, in the US, it was their only song to chart, making it to number seventeen on the Modern Rock Tracks chart.  In New Zealand it soared to number two.

Each evening the sun sets in five billion places,
Seen by ten billion eyes set in five billion faces,
Then they close in a daze and wait for the dawing,
But the daylight and sunrise
Are brighter in our eyes,
Where night cannot devour golden solar power

Once we were damned now I guess we are angels
For we passed though the dark and avoided the dangers
Then I awoke with a start to startling changes
All the tension is ended,
The sentence suspended,
And darkness now sparkles and gleams.

And it all seems larger than life to me
I find it rather hard rather hard to believe.

So I stand as the sound goes straight through my body,
I'm so bloated up, happy, and I throw things around me.
And I'm growing in stages, and have been for ages,
Just singing and floating and free.

Dum de dum dum
Its a heavenly pop hit
If anyone wants it.
Dum de dum dum
Its a heavenly pop hit,
Its something that we're humming as
We swoop low on trees, or we sweep under carpets,
We can dive into suns though its not recommended,
We can hover, silent, and listen, closely...

It all seems, (all seems)
Larger than life to me,
I find it, (find it)
Hard to believe,

So where was our home,
Well, our home was in tears,
For it's fruit has gone bad,
They'd been that way for years
Yet their lives are elsatic,
They should be fantastic,
They should be expanding.

Dum de dum dum
Dum de dum dum
It's a heavenly pop hit,
If anyone wants it.

Dum de dum dum
Dum de dum dum
It's a heavenly pop hit,
For anybody,
For those that still want it.

"The Oncoming Day"

"Sweet Times"

"Submarine Bells"

'Submarine Bells'
full album:

All songs written by Martin Phillips.

Heavenly Pop Hit 3:27
Tied Up In Chain 3:15
The Oncoming Day 3:06
Part Past Part Fiction 2:55
Singing In My Sleep 2:39
I SOAR 3:04
Dead Web 2:15
Familiarity Breeds Contempt 3:20
Don't Be - Memory 4:45
Effloresce And Deliquesce 2:45
Sweet Times 0:40
Submarine Bells 3:41

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