Winter Songs (Art Bears album)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Winter Songs
Studio album by Art Bears
Released 1979 (1979)
Recorded Switzerland,
November–December 1978
Genre Avant-rock
Length 38:07
Label Recommended (UK)
Producer Art Bears
Etienne Conod
Art Bears chronology
Hopes and Fears
(1978)
Winter Songs
(1979)
The World as It Is Today
(1981)
Singles from Winter Songs
  1. "Rats & Monkeys" b/w "Collapse"
    Released: 1979, Ralph Records
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3/5 stars[1]
Robert Christgau B+[2]
An audio sample from "Three Wheels"

Problems playing this file? See media help.

Winter Songs is the second album by English avant-rock group Art Bears. It was recorded at Sunrise Studio in Kirchberg, Switzerland between 22 November and 5 December 1978, and was released in 1979. It was Art Bears' first album to be recorded on their own, the bulk of their first album, Hopes and Fears (1978) having been recorded as Henry Cow. Ground and Sky wrote in a review of the album: "Winter Songs often seems like the third wheel in Art Bears' trilogy of full-length releases; it is neither as overtly political nor as musically diverse as either of the albums that bookend it."[3]

Recording the album[edit]

Winter Songs comprises fourteen short songs composed by Fred Frith around texts by Chris Cutler that were based on carvings on the dado of the west facade of Amiens Cathedral in France. The whole album was recorded and mixed simultaneously, taking 14 days from start to finish. The group adopted an approach of creating the sound first and committing it to tape immediately, instead of leaving the sound detail to post-production mixing. This method used the studio as a compositional instrument, and Etienne Conod, the studio engineer at Sunrise Studio, played an important part in this process, becoming an indispensable member of the group.[4]

Track listing[edit]

Side 1
  1. "The Bath of Stars" (Cutler, Frith) – 1:45
  2. "First Things First" (Cutler, Frith) – 2:50
  3. "Gold" (Cutler, Frith) – 1:41
  4. "The Summer Wheel" (Cutler, Frith) – 2:47
  5. "The Slave" (Cutler, Frith) – 3:38
  6. "The Hermit" (Cutler, Frith) – 2:59
  7. "Rats and Monkeys" (Cutler, Frith) – 3:24
Side 2
  1. "The Skeleton" (Cutler, Frith) – 3:11
  2. "The Winter Wheel" (Cutler, Frith) – 3:06
  3. "Man and Boy" (Cutler, Frith) – 3:21
  4. "Winter/War" (Cutler, Frith) – 3:05
  5. "Force" (Cutler, Frith) – 0:54
  6. "Three Figures" (Cutler, Frith) – 1:51
  7. "Three Wheels" (Cutler, Frith) – 3:35

Personnel[edit]

Sound and art work[edit]

CD reissues[edit]

  • Winter Songs and Art Bears' next album, The World as It Is Today were reissued on a single CD in 1988, entitled 25 Songs.
  • The album was also reissued in 2003 in The Art Box, a 6xCD box set of all Art Bears releases with live and unreleased tracks, plus remixes by other musicians.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Mills, Ted. "Winter Songs". Allmusic. Retrieved 2011-06-21. 
  2. ^ Christgau, Robert. "Art Bears". Robert Christgau. Retrieved 2011-06-21. 
  3. ^ "Winter Songs". Ground and Sky. Retrieved 2010-07-13. 
  4. ^ Cutler, Chris. "Art Bears". Chris Cutler's homepage. Retrieved 2007-01-03. 

External links[edit]