The Cat Empire (album)

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The Cat Empire
Studio album by The Cat Empire
Released 24 October 2003
Recorded 2003
Genre Alternative rock, Jazz, Ska, Reggae
Length 55:07
Label EMI/Virgin
Producer Andy Baldwin and The Cat Empire
The Cat Empire chronology
The Cat Empire
Two Shoes

The Cat Empire is the eponymous studio debut album of Melbourne band The Cat Empire. Released in October 2003 in Australia, it went platinum in Australia in February 2004.

Recording of the album[edit]

The band recorded its debut studio album in seven months during 2003 with producer Andy Baldwin in Melbourne. They recorded the album in-between touring Australia, playing at the St Kilda Festival with Kate Ceberano and appearing at the Byron Bay Blues & Roots Festival in April 2003. The band was nominated in two categories at the Australian Jazz Awards. The band successfully applied for an International Pathways grant from The Australia Council for the Arts.

The band was featured in BBC Four coverage of the 2003 WOMAD Festival where the band appeared. Their track "Two Shoes" was placed on high rotation on BBC Radio 1 in August 2003. The band's growing live and critical reputation put them in a great position to approach record companies for a record deal for their self-financed, self-titled debut album in the middle of 2003. The band signed a deal with EMI's Virgin Records subsidiary.

Chart and Live Success[edit]

The first single "Hello" was released in October 2003 with a film clip that was Channel V's clip of the week ahead of Justin Timberlake. The Cat Empire was released in November 2003, debuting in the top 20 of the ARIA Top 50 album chart with Triple J nominating it as their album of the week in November. High profile appearances on Rove (Live) with Rove McManus and The Panel on Network Ten helped raise the profile of the album helping it to go gold in Australia by December 2003.

"Hello" finished at number 6 on the Triple J Hottest 100 for 2003, one of the biggest music polls in the world with album track "Days Like These" at number 37 and "The Chariot" at number 100.

"Days Like These" was the second single reaching the top 40 of the ARIA singles charts in early 2004. Their debut album went platinum in February 2004. Their third single "The Chariot" debuted in the ARIA top 40 in May 2004.

This album has been released with the Copy Control protection system in some regions.

Track listing[edit]

  1. "How to Explain?" – 3:37
  2. "Days Like These" – 4:07
  3. "The Lost Song" – 3:15
  4. "The Chariot" – 5:34
  5. "Hello" – 3:44
  6. "One Four Five" – 3:24
  7. "The Rhythm" – 3:24
  8. "The Wine Song" – 7:22
  9. "Nothing" – 3:39
  10. "Beanni" – 2:19
  11. "The Crowd" – 5:13
  12. "Manifesto" – 2:34
  13. "All That Talking" – 6:54


A different version of The Cat Empire has been released in some European countries under the Universal Music Group. It adds the rare track "Feline" (as found on "Touring Europe and the UK, 2004") as track number 7, effectively pushing the other tracks down. "The Chariot" and "Beanni" also trade places. A promotional advance release of the album also exists (labeled 'PR337', pressed by Virgin Records), called Oct 2003 Album and was sent to reviewers before the album was released. It contains the same track listing as the European version. Another advance release exists, again, pressed by Virgin Records, and labeled 'PR343', which has the same track listing as the 'PR337' release, albeit with correct spelling of track 3 on the disc.

The tracks in the promotional release are all earlier, more 'raw' mixes and have very subtle differences, yet they contribute greatly to the depth of each track. A few examples include extra background percussion throughout "How to Explain?", and different voice samples in "Days Like These" (for example, the "one two" sample, and Will's Mexican voice).

  1. How to Explain? - 3:37
  2. Days Like These - 4:07
  3. The Lost Song - 3:15 (incorrectly named as 'The Last Song' on 'PR337' promotional release)
  4. Beanni - 2:18
  5. Hello - 3:44
  6. One Four Five - 3:24
  7. Feline - 2:36
  8. The Rhythm - 3:24
  9. The Wine Song - 7:22
  10. Nothing - 3:41
  11. The Chariot - 5:35
  12. The Crowd - 5:16
  13. Manifesto - 2:34
  14. All That Talking - 6:53

External links[edit]