On the eve of the Vivid launch show for the new LP from The Singing Skies, the main creative figure behind the band, Kell Derrig-Hall, takes us on a tour of his record collection and a few of the albums that shaped his musical life.
Head In The Trees, Heart On The Ground (via Preservation Records) is Derrig-Hall’s second album and it’s quite the immersive, mesmerising and atmospheric listening experience – of which we’ve said:
“Evocative moods via a lush and swooning sonic palette afford Derrig-Hall the ability to paint stately and ornate folk songs of the English variety. Everything is considered and most of it is gently presented with strings, guitar, shuffling drums, soft bass and a warm dose of ambient reverb giving the songs a dreamy, pastoral quality.”
You can catch The Singing Skies launching their album live at Golden Age Cinema & Bar in Surry Hills, Sydney on Saturday June 3rd, in collaboration with Vivid Sydney.
The first album you bought.
I bought Metallica’s Ride The Lightning and Guns N’ Roses’ The Spaghetti Incident on cassette from a mall near my house. The Guns N’ Roses tape was all covers which I didn’t realise at the time. I think there was a Cosmic Psychos cover on there which is pretty cool. I’m still a pretty big fan of Ride The Lightning when I’m in the right mood.
An album that soundtracked a relationship.
My partner Lia and I listened to a lot of Red Apple Falls by Smog early in our relationship. It’s a lovely record to sleep in and create your own world around.
An album that inspired you to form a band.
Leonard Cohen’s Songs From A Room was a big influence on my songwriting and convinced me that writing songs that centred around lyrics and sincere sounding singing could be exciting. Lia and I formed an ambient noisey drone band called Moonmilk after spending a lot of time with Fripp and Eno’s No Pussyfooting.
An album that reminds you of your high school years.
The Clash – London Calling
I loved this album so much and I made tapes of the double album which gave it a lot of mileage on the bus to school. It really opened me up to a lot different ideas in music.
An album you’d love to hear live and played in full.
John Cale – Paris 1919.
This album is just so incredible. Imagine seeing those strings and oboes and wild arrangements. John Cale taking on a character that speaks to ghosts and travels around Europe being mystified by everything and poking fun at the aristocracy. Apparently he was very high and loose during the writing and recording but I think he could pull it off.
Your favourite album cover art.
King Crimson – The Court of the Crimson King
A guilty pleasure album.
Bob Dylan – Empire Burlesque.
This is not a celebrated Dylan album, but I think it’s pretty great. The arrangements are creating some sort of new wave/harmonica rock. There are some really great songs on it and he’s really belting it out with the backing singers. It doesn’t always go down well at a party though.
The last album I bought.
Weyes Blood – Front Row Seat To Earth
The next album I want to buy.
Richard and Linda Thompson – Pour Down Like Silver
Alice Coltrane – The Ecstatic Music Of Alice Coltrane
Heat Wave – Heat Wave