‘Everything must come to an end’
Part diary, part collage, part mixtape, ‘The 17th Year’ documents a life-changing year through audio samples, writing and songs. Music featured in the mix includes an updated recording of a Quintessence song (one of Tom’s former bands) and a new song by No Side Effects. The mix also includes the voices of Adrian Wallington of Two Short Planks/No Side Effects and Sumita Majumda of IndoorGoblin.
Susanne Sundfør – Darlings
Ben Folds – Capable of Anything (Grasslands Overdub)
The Vaccines – Dream Lover
Nils Frahm – Our Own Roof
Grasslands – Too Many Knives
The Magic Lantern – Guilty Hearts
Cloud Nothings – I’m Not Part of Me
Low – What Part of Me
Lanterns On The Lake – I’ll Stall Them
No Side Effects – Final Forecast
School Of Seven Bells – Open Your Eyes
So much is happening over here in Grasslands universe that I rarely have time to write it all up for the blog.
2016 has seen Grasslands performing live for the first time (despite having spent years and years writing and recording songs) and has even seen the addition of a new Grasslands member!!!
With three gigs under my belt, and another three on the horizon, I thought I would give you a quick update on the events of the past few months.
Gig #1 – Roaring Donkey – April ‘16
First up was an acoustic gig at the Roaring Donkey, supporting George Wilding. I experimented with some electronics for ‘The Ball Starts To Move’ which seemed to go down well. My new 12-string suffered from stage fright and decided to de-tune, so I eventually abandoned it. We have since been to counselling together to discuss what went wrong between us. Maybe I’ll recount that experience some other time.
Gig #2 – Baila Coffee & Vinyl – May ‘16
For this gig at Swindon’s best coffee shop, Baila Coffee & Vinyl and part of ‘The Renegade Sessions’ I was supporting the amazing Vienna Ditto and I decided to have a go at a full set of electronic goodness. My musical friend, Indoor Goblin, helped me out for this gig on keyboards, glockenspiel and harmonies. We thought we blew up the PA at one point, but all was good in the end. The crowning achievement of this gig was finally being able to perform ‘Ambient Groceries’.
Grasslands had so much fun performing with Indoor Goblin that she is helping me play some other gigs too. We also hope to play some music with Vienna Ditto again in the future.
Gig #3 – Desk Cowork – July ‘16
Desk Cowork had a party and Grasslands was invited. along with singer songwriter George Lewis Todd. This gig was subtler than the previous two and provided a bit of background music for various party chats and ping pong games. A few Quintessence songs from the long lost past crept out of hiding too including ‘This Train’ and ‘See You On The Otherside’. My car broke down on the way to the gig, so I taxi’d to the venue and had the opportunity to drink lots of gin in the aftermath, which is always a good thing.
In my next blog I will detail the next set of gigs planned for Summer and Autumn.
I’d also like to thank Songs of Praise for all their support and offering me performance slots this year these guys are great!!!
And so… as the hours of the day draw to a close, you can now experience my first mixtape made with an iPad while alone in a hotel in Scotland.
Enjoy the night time!
We were made in the dark:
Without enough practice to make him comfortable, Tom has decided to take his collection of Grasslands songs outside his studio and attempt to play them in a coherent manner to audiences of humans in places that he likes.
Here is the type of thing you can expect (backwards and sped-up, thus making it not exactly what you can expect).
Tom’s first gig is at the Roaring Donkey in Swindon on Wednesday 20th April in support of George Wilding.
Here are the full details: https://www.facebook.com/events/845523335570906/
Come and say ‘hi’ or give me a Mars Bar, it’s up to you which you want to do.
Are you bored this Bank Holiday Monday? Want to listen to some music? It’s been a very productive period in the cold and wet meadows where Grasslands hangs around and he’s happy to present his current musical offerings, so look no further, Grasslands can keep you occupied for hours.
No Side Effects
Over the past few months Tom has been releasing electronic music with his wildlife partner-in-crime Adrian as ‘No Side Effects’.
They have released three singles which reflect on how we all cope with this rapidly changing modern world. First up is their debut, ‘Isolation Explosion’, which is a dark synth laden mid-tempo tune with some fuzzy guitars and beat boxing.
Their second single ‘In Your Brain Right Now’ is a crazy jamming session built around a lecture by philosopher Sam Harris about controlling the mind.
Their third single ‘Dark Light’ is a synth heavy number with Tom on drumming and harmony duties. They even recorded a video for this one featuring both Tom and Ade getting blinded by strobe lights and pretending to be serious.
Fancy something a bit more academic? Why not check out the duos first two podcasts about social anxiety and loneliness or read the range of blog articles they have both written on these subjects.
Grasslands – Hidden! Ninja! Action! – Mixtape
Tom started 2016 by releasing his hour long mixtape about ninjas. The mixtape includes a range of genres from Ska to Pirate Rap and features samples of ninjas from film and TV. There’s been a lot of love for this mix so please do check it out:
Tom is warming up for his first Grasslands gig which will be at the Roaring Donkey in Swindon on the 20th April.
As part of his practice sessions he’s put together some performance videos. The videos include: ‘The Ball Starts To Move’ one of Tom’s most popular songs; an acoustic version of ‘This Is The Way I Rationalise’ and an acoustic cover of Tasmin Archer’s ‘Sleeping Satellite’.
Tom is just starting work on recording ‘EP3: Small Town Justice’, so now is a good time to catch up with ‘EP1: Time To Think’ and ‘EP2: My Folks Prefer The Clone’. Check them out below.
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