News & Insights 3 September 2012

Playing a gig. Next to a lake. With ducks.

'Come on, own up - which one of us forgot to pack the galoshes?'Last week was an interesting one for The Lightyears. On Friday we met up to work on songs for the new album, and by the end of the day we had fairly workable versions of four tracks – two of mine (Blinded By Light and Embrace Of Many) and two of George’s (One Way Or The Other and I Won’t Wait Forever). Then, the following day whilst in the Lake District for a gig, we said ‘hang it all’ and went and set up by the side of a massive lake and filmed ourselves playing them.

It was a pretty basic set-up – unplugged, unfettered, just four guys, the countryside and a Canon 550. We had to abandon a couple of takes due to unexpected labrador-related mishaps, but in the end (in the space of about twenty-five minutes) we managed to record all four songs.

We’ve actually been planning to do something like this for a while. As we’re often on the road at the weekend playing private events we figured it would make sense to use the dead time after sound-check to create something for you guys, and the idea of heading out into the country and performing ‘ad hoc’ rather appealed to us. Kind of like guerilla gigging… only there wouldn’t be an audience – well, some goats and ducks ‘n’ stuff, but no people (this actually wouldn’t be the first time we’ve performed for livestock – there was that the gig we once played in a cow-shed in Belgium… but I digress).

I actually have no idea how the videos will come out – for all I know it might just be three minutes of us bopping away to a muffled soundtrack of wind and quacking. We’ll keep you posted. But hey, at the very least we gave two groups of Cumbrian ramblers something to talk about in the pub on Saturday night. I suspect stumbling across a piano-led indie-rock band from London while on a gentle stroll around Lake Grasmere is about as likely as bumping into a sheep in the Trocadero.

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