Tag Archives: pop

ExtraNoVocal (new album – out May 2018)

‘ExtraNoVocal’ is the twelfth album by Dutch musician Ewald Kegel, to be released in May 2018.

The album is a collection of instrumental (hence ‘no vocal’) music recorded between 1987 and 2018. ‘Extra’ refers to the fact that these tracks have not been released before and can be considered as an addendum to regular releases.

The album contains a variety of styles ranging from minimalistic music and piano music (“Work in Progress”, “Sombre”, “Finale”) to full fledged, complex songs like newly recorded tracks “Please Make Me Wonder” and “Another World”. Also there are improvised tunes like ‘Mine’ and the chaotic rock of “Unintentional”. The album is centred around 80’s and early 90’s electronic music influenced by the then popular Yamaha FM synthesis. The album forms a pair with a previous album “Extra Vocal”, an earlier 2018 release. “Extra Vocal” had a similar approach, which is also expressed in the comparable album cover design. In the case of ExtraVocal the album obviously vocal tracks.

The album opens with ‘Please Make Me Wonder’ , an original version of the song was composed and recorded in 1985. The title refers to the Beach Boys song ‘Please Let Me Wonder’. By the time of the original recording of the song the producer noticed that some of the melodic elements sounded similar to the Beach Boys song ‘Please Let me Wonder’ from the mid 1960s.

The song can be listened to on YouTube:

The album weighs in on a rediscovered VHS tape in 2015. That tape contained mixes of songs that mostly were considered to be lost or forgotten (‘Xandra’ – ca. 1988, ‘Party Jam’ – ca. 1988, ‘Rush Hour’ – ca. 1988, ‘Hard Beat’ – ca. 1987). Many of these compositions were written originally for use in audiovisual productions. ‘Hard Beat’ was composed for a 1987 BMW commercial. The late 1980 songs on this album represent the introduction of the computer (Atari 1040STf) in the recording studio. Sampling became a common place in the music as is clearly audible on a track like ‘Hard Beat’.

‘Extra NoVocal’ also contains two tracks from the never released album ‘Synthesizer’ (2007): ‘Yess Delight’ and ‘Finale’. Other tracks on the album ‘Kirana’ – 2014, ‘Disco Daze’ – ca. 1992, ‘Mine’ – 2008, ‘Unintentional’ – ca. 2009, ‘Back 2 the 80s’ – 2011, ‘Sombre’ – 2014 and ‘The Last Supper’ – 2016 contain edits, remixes and added recording made in 2018. Another -more electronic sounding- version of ’Mine’ was originally released in 2008 on the ‘Magic Colors’ EP. The acoustic version on ‘Extra NoVocal’ is the original recording of the song.

A new, free EP: ‘1986’

As a spin off of a forthcoming project a new, free EP is now available for listening on Soundcloud or by downloading a ZIP file.

‘1986’ contains 5 songs that Ewald has recorded in spring/summer of 1986 and never had been released before. These songs were the first ones recorded on a Tascam 246, a 4 track recording device that utilized cassette as the recording medium. In December 2015 – January 2016 these tracks were intensively re-edited and remastered, giving the material a very fresh and rather astonishing sound quality.

Here is some information on the individual tracks:

(Say Goodbye To) Mr. Rock ‘n Roll

‘I remember this song to be the first one I recorded on the Tascam 246, it must have been somewhere in Spring 1986. The theme of the song deals with the subject of rock artists who later in life try to act as if they are still in their prime time. But there is also the element of mysticism of these old times versus the modern ways of music making’.

I Wanna Be Where You Are

‘The song was directly connected to the song ‘Pretty Nurse’ as they represent a kind of ying versus yang type of relation. Where ‘I Wanna Be’ represents the optimism of love, ‘Pretty Nurse’ represents the confusion at the end of a relationship. From a music perspective the music sounds to me still fresh and open after so many years. First I thought I wanted to edit the music to make it into a 3 minute song. But every attempt seemed to be doomed, so I left it uncut and still has the original 7 minute length.’

Pretty Nurse

‘This is probably one of the most psychedelic tracks that I recorded. The Yamaha DX7 was relatively still new in the studio and although it is mostly remembered for its slick electric pianos, I think this track shows that it could produce a completely different kind of sound. I remember I started this track on a Sunday morning and a few hours later it was all done, i recorded this song pretty quickly.’

Hey Girl

‘This is a very pop, Beatles like tune, I already composed the song around 1981, so what you hear here is a sort of re-recording from an original demo. The Beatles-like influences can be heard in the song arrangement: going from a 4/4 tempo, to a 3/4 tempo in the break and then returning to 4/4 for the ending of the song. The drums rely on the Simmons SDS-200, In all its simplicity I still think of this song as one of my better and best beloved compositions.’

= The Hague, January 4th 2016 =