I am happy to say that the new album ‘Nevermore’ is now finished and has been delivered to my German label Syborg for release in May. Those who have been involved in the production tell me that it is, in their opinion, the best album I have recorded to date with a very strong selection of songs in a variety of styles from seafaring folk to psych pop and more whimsical fantasy this time inspired by Jules Verne as well Poe.
I am particularly proud of the three song suite ‘The Last Voyage of the Nautillus’ with its ‘Wyndham Hill’-style opener concerning Captain Nemo and the instrumental passage which develops from that which I created in collaboration with Nico Steckelberg who also added the finishing touches or as we call it, ‘the icing on the cake’. There are no formal string arrangements which characterised many of my albums in the past, but there are intricate and atmospheric embellishments to the more acoustic based tracks such as ‘Eight Little Whores’ (a street ballad about the victims of Jack The Ripper), ‘Abramelin’ (about a magician’s apprentice) and the quirky ‘Tell-Tale Heart’ (with its Addams Family cartoon approach to Poe). There is only one outright rock track (‘The Great Deceiver’) and one pure psych pop item (the opener ‘Edgar Allen Poe’) plus one traditional folk ballad (‘Sam Hall’ about a hanging at Tyburn which I couldn’t resist). So it is a real diverse mixture, especially when you add in a tongue in cheek tribute to ‘Leatherface’, the killer from ‘Texas Chainsaw Massacre’ movie and the aforementioned excursion into the world of the cinematic soundtrack for the Nautillus suite, but that’s what you get with Roland. For more on the making of ‘Nevermore’ and other news you may like to read my latest and possibly my longest interview on the German website www.nonpop.de
An English translation can be found through the link to the interview database at www.myspace/music/paulroland
The PRAS should have a small quantity of ‘Nevermore’ for those who would like to buy it by mail nearer the release date so please don’t send any money now, wait until mid April.
Re-issues and a FREE CD!
The re-issue programme is forging ahead – the first was the slightly different German edition of ‘Re-Animator’ released in February with a few bonus tracks (alternative mixes of ‘Abdul Alhazred’ and ‘Swamp Girl’ and a very slightly different mix of ‘Assassins’) plus an amended running order (it opened with the title track instead of ‘Charles Dexter Ward’ which now appears later in the album). The first 500 copies also included a bonus sampler CD featuring one track from each of the reissues that are planned to appear over the next two years at the rate of one every three months or so.
For those who already have the album in one of its earlier incarnations you can claim a FREE copy of the German edition with the bonus CD simply by writing TWO short reviews of any Roland album or book for Amazon or CDbaby (www.cdbaby.com) or any other website and tell us where we can see these on-line. The reviews can be just a few lines and you can say what you like about the album or book.
Alternatively, you can post two ‘lists’ on Amazon including at least TWO Roland items (one in each list or more if you like) with or without a comment by each item. These lists act as recommendations for other Amazon customers who are looking to discover new albums, artists or authors and so are a great way to introduce others to the music or books that you like. You can call the list anything you like from the obvious ‘My favourite albums’ to something more specific such as ‘80s cult heroes’, ‘Psych pop gems’ etc etc Being in these lists and having reviews of my work on Amazon, CDbaby and elsewhere is not an ego trip for me – it is necessary to spread the word about the music I make and the books I write when the labels and publishers do not promote my work widely or, in some cases, not at all! So if you want to thank me for my music this is the best way and I am happy to send you a free CD to reciprocate. Don’t forget to send your postal address with the link to the review so we can send you the CD.
The next re-issue, ‘Danse Macabre’/’Burnt Orchids’, should be released between ‘Re-animator’ (Feb) and ‘Nevermore’ (May) so if you want to send money for that now, you can and we will reserve a copy for you to post out the day it comes in. I strongly recommend that you let us know as soon as possible if you want a copy (or more than one) of these CDs as they are strictly limited editions and we will only have 50 copies to sell through this site.
These definitive reissues have new cover artwork and booklets with photos from the period featuring sleeve notes by yours truly.
I also made subtle but significant improvements to some of the tracks, but don’t expect a huge difference. They were not remixed and the changes were designed to improve the tracks (strengthening a vocal or adding a second guitar or keyboard line) and not change the characteristic sound, but as one person involved with the project has remarked they no longer sound like well made ‘demos’. My thanks to Ralf Jesek of In My Rosary for finishing these tracks to my taste and to Tobias Birkenbeil who added a real harpsichord to ‘Madame Guillotine’ to mask the synth that I was forced to use back in ‘87. Also to Ralf Schuessler for remastering the albums and for his very tasteful artwork.
Incidentally, those who would like to have only the retouched tracks or the rarer tracks can download these separately from AppleiTunes and other digital providers without having to buy the whole CD again.
The Return of the Werewolf!!
And talking of reissues, we have a few copies left of the private pressing of my very first album, ‘The Werewolf Of London’ which was strictly limited to 300 copies. It is NOT available in the shops or from Amazon – only from the PRAS. It has been painstakingly and tastefully re-mastered by Ralf Schuessler who used the latest software to remove all clicks and surface noise from the original vinyl and the album has been fleshed out with unreleased tracks from a planned second Midnight Rags album and several alternative versions from the first edition on Ace Records (the one with the black and white cover).
The full track listing is:
THE WEREWOLF OF LONDON (PRASCDR 001) 74 mins
Blades of Battenburg/Brain Police/Oscar Automobile/Flying Ace/The Cars That Ate New York/Public Enemy/Werewolves of London/Angel/Lon Chaney/Alcatraz/Jack Daniels
Outtakes from first version of the LP on Ace: ‘Oscar Automobile’, ‘Werewolves of London’, ‘Witching Hour’ + ‘Girls’
Out takes from unreleased second album ‘The Ghoul’, ‘Cadillac Moon’, ‘The Old Dark House’, ‘Cavalier’, ‘Mad Elaine’ and ‘Sword and Sorcery’.
Thank you to all those who wrote to tell me they were happy to have this on CD at last and to reassure me that it really wasn’t as bad as I made out!
METHODS OF PAYMENT
As I said, the ‘Werewolf of London’, ‘’Danse Macabre’/’Burnt Orchids’ and German ‘Re-Animator’ CDs will only be available for a short time direct from the PRAS. Price for each CD is 15 euros inc postage within Europe and to the UK. Please allow 3-5 days for delivery to countries outside Germany and up to 21 days to USA and Australia. NOTE: If you order more than one copy of each CD all extra copies will be half price and no extra postage [eg One CD for 15 euros, Two CDs for 22 euros, Three CDs for 30 euros] so maybe you want to buy one for a friend, but these must be multiple copies of the same title.
Payment can be made with a credit card via paypal using the e-mail address email@example.com
on the paypal website
OR by sending euros/cash to the NEW PRAS ADDRESS in Germany which is - Postfach 111064, D-76060 Karlsruhe, Germany.
My MySpace site (designed and maintained by the inexhaustibly enthusiastic Dexter) has logged almost 4,000 visitors since it was launched a few months ago and now has a link to an on-line discography with sound samples and another link to the PR Forum www.dunkelromantik.de
and the interview archive.
Visit MySpace, click on ‘music’ then enter ‘Paul Roland’ and ‘search’.
There is also now a German Wikipedia entry (www.wikipedia.de) which you can read and contribute to if you so wish and very soon there will also be an English version (www.wikipedia.co.uk)
For those of you living in Greece I hope to see you at the concert at the Dada club in Athens on March 10. Please feel free to come along and say hello afterwards. But if you can’t come, please keep in touch by e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org). I’d love to hear from you.