SHATTERPOINT: Re-written to suit

Between the 7th and 9th of January, local talent Shatterpoint finally produced an album they are happy with. Fully re-recorded and re-mastered. From start to finish, the album is, in their guitarist’s words, “an excellent one”. Inevitably there are songs I prefer to others, but as a whole, “Memoirs of a Maker” is strong and defines who Shatterpoint are. To know the album is a re-recording makes me wonder what must have gone wrong the first time around; Shatterpoint have a sound that always draws in a crowd and strive to improve what they do; as I learnt yesterday after sitting in on a band practice to photograph.
With tracks such as “Blue Heart”, “Dance in the Dirt”, “Heart on my Sleeve” and “Trainwreck” Shatterpoint are introduced. Even from the opening track you know you’re in for a treat, there is a rustic feel to the bluesy vibe and it builds suspense for what you are in for. More often than not, it isn’t what you expect. Once “Devil of the Moment” kicks in you can hear their influences breaking through. Tracks such as “Hecate’s Lake” has the same effect, starting with stormy sounds, there is the suggestion to the way things are not always as they seem. One minute Shatterpoint are back to a seemingly bluesy influence, with a heavier feel compared to the beginning, and then we are given breakthroughs to the influences of the likes of Clutch and Pantera. And 5minutes into the song we are fed with a wonderfully repetitive yet intricate approach to playing.
Tracks including “Dance in the Dirt” and “Heavy Days” are both interesting and gripping, “Dance in the Dirt” notes upon a trait reminiscent of many songs, the [ever-so-dramatic] pause at the end of selected lines, but it works, it gives the song something extra and Shatterpoint are currently working on making this song tighter. “Heavy Days” sees gripping vocals and edgy riffs. Though I did find myself wanting something more from this track, perhaps the need for it to be loud and live, such as with “Slug”.
Everything about “Slug” sounds dirtier live,  and this is what it needs. The recorded version reiterates this, some songs simply need a stage and a sweaty crowd. “Purge and Redeem” and “Condemned” also sit nicely on the album, particularly “Purge and Redeem” being a new addition to the Shatterpoint playlist. However, I am still unable to decide on what I think about the recorded version of “Condemned”. The bass and guitar come through nicely, though I find the vocals to be [ordinarily] more compelling. Even when volume is added throughout the song, it is still no match to some of the other songs. Having had the album on repeat I feel the vocals are missing an edge some of the other tracks possess.
“Trainwreck” is always a favourite live, and definitely a favourite on the album too. Upon first listen, there is [I admit] not a great deal of difference to the vocal style of this song and the last but this track appeals to me more. It captivates the audience and gets them moving when performed live. One of Shatterpoints notable tracks that people can sing along too. With its deeper meaning, it is something that everybody can relate to. It touches home and acts as a sense of relief. The way song writing is amongst the greats.

“Falling Away” is the 9minute culmination to “Memoirs of a Maker”. There is an enticement to the lyrical content of this track, and with the subtle tones that open this number, you can feel the emotion seeping through, initiating a direct connection with no distractions. Half way through this track, the pace fastens, but continues with what I shall call an "emotive connection". This even comes across in each of the instrumental features. A beautiful way to end the album. To conclude listening to  the album, I asked vocalist, Ed Stone, a few [general] questions.

What were the reasons for re-recording the album?
We wanted to re-record it as we came up with new arrangements for tracks such as “Heavy Days”, and we had written two new songs (“Purge and Redeem” and “Falling Away”) shortly after that we really wanted them on the album. Had we left the rest of the songs, the new ones would have sounded like they had been thrown in last minute, due to different recording and mixing approaches. Also from a personal point of view I really wasn't happy with the vocals on the first effort – this being a debut we all wanted it to be perfect.
What were the influences behind the album and the decision to open with a bluesy number? I’ve noticed this is common at your gigs too.
"Blue Heart" stemmed from my long love of the blues, and how I was feeling at the time. A lot of bands in the scene have orchestral intros as openers for their albums or to set off their gigs before the open chords are struck. I suggested we did Blue Heart as an opener to counteract this, but also so it could be the preceding half of "Heart on My Sleeve." I had the melody, and me and Sandy [Shatterpoints bass player] just jammed out one time at practice. We love it because it kinda lulls the audience into a sense of false security before the eruption into the rest of the set. We enjoy it because sometimes people don't know what to expect. We wanted it to seem as though perhaps they picked up a vintage blues album, which will be reflected in the album art when I've designed it. (obviously since rock and metal stemmed from the blues) We don't really know if it works, we just enjoy playing it J
It definitely works. Being a favourite of mine, and a favourite of many, I want to know, what is the meaning behind the track “Trainwreck”?
Trainwreck. Trainwreck is a long story. When I was thirteen my dad died of a lymphoma. The next couple of years I was kind of reclusive, I didn't hang out with Mark or anyone really outside of school. When I started coming out again was when we were all experimenting with alcohol etc. I guess I took it a bit too far. It was getting to the point when people would tell me of the things I did the night before and it would kill me. But I'd do it again. and again and again (hence the lyric) It felt good to not feel the pain, but it was leaving me worse off in the long run. As cheesy as it sounds the music is a form of escapism from that. I've addressed the loss of my dad in “Falling Away” as well which was really difficult to record. I showed it to my mum and she cried.
That's pretty much it to scam over the subject. I don't want to waffle or be boring/too self centred.
Finally [and on a lighter note], although I never really heard the previous version, has the re-recording captured what you wanted?
We’re all really happy with the new recordings. We all love blasting the album in our retrospective cars [laughs], me in particular, as I couldn’t listen to the first recording without cringing. It’s something we’re all really proud of, especially since it’s our first effort. We have some new stuff on the go but we still have to release this one.
Shatterpoint are the band that’ll “beat your hangover into bloody submission”. To hear tracks from the album and contact the band, visit:

No comments:

Post a Comment