Songs written and performed by James Rutherford
Recording, Mixing: James Rutherford
Mastering: Marco Sebastian Christ
Album picture: Peter Forster
Buy album via Bandcamp (digital release)
(mp3, FLAC, AAC, Ogg Vorbis, ALAC, WAV, AIFF)
(Money is completely for the artist. Not for the label!)
For this release all started with a short e-mail I received on the 1st of June in 2020. I was asked kindly but briefly, if I like to listen to some music. Certainly I wanted and replied, especially because everthing around this e-mail, the few words, the more or less anonymous sender, increased my curiousity. Just a few days later I got a second message with a soundcloud link and I started to listen immediately. And the more tracks I played, the more it was like a flashback for me to my younger days, when I were searching for always new and different kinds of music and absorbed all like a sponge.
What I heard reminded me of one of my favourite bands from the early 90ies called The Fatima Mansions. Music, that cozens you with sweet Pop just to confront you with noise and confusion in the very next moment. Catchy hooklines followed by overwhelming distortion. Music that forces you to listen, to keep attention even in the musical borderlands, when sounds are shrill and become exhausting. I also thought of Simple Minds in view of the elaborate compositions, that I recognized. Then the early Killing Joke came to my mind regarding the more demanding songs.
Finally I felt, that these musical pieces were something special and definitely should be released. Not just because they sounded like from another area of music production, but of the simple fact, that musically they were remarkable. To me the music stood out due to a huge depth in view of songwriting, arrangement and instrumentation. And then there was this strong, clear and placable voice, that always guided me throughout the alternating soundscapes.
To put it in a nutshell: Feel free to call it Art or Progressive Rock. To me Overdrive by Swimming Monkey is sophisticated confrontational Pop in style of the late 80ies and early 90ies, when compositions still arose in the mind’s eye instead of in a digital workstation. It’s not a difference in quality (Don’t get me wrong. I am not nostalgic.), but a difference in the way creation takes place, which I guess is audible.
Certainly it was James, who had sent me his music, fortunately! In the end we agreed on 11 songs, we put together to the album Overdrive. And what made this release even more mysterious was, that James sadly just had some final files of the songs. And due to the fact, they wasn’t mastered properly and all differently, it was really like recovering a precious and thought lost treasure doing the remastering and forming this album.