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New Album: Charlotte Yates

Last edited: 14.07.17 | Comment? | By











‘New Album’ is where a band or artist answers some questions about their latest release. Up next is Charlotte Yates, whose seventh album, ‘Then the Stars Start Singing’, is released on July 28th.

When/where was the new album recorded?
My seventh studio album, Then the Stars Start Singing was recorded in my and Gil Eva Craig’s studios @ Hopper St, Wellington, mostly during March and April this year, with some overdubs/programming from our guests, 50Hz and percussionist Jeremy Fitzsimons late May. The album was mixed by Simon Gooding in Wellington for Big Pop Studios and is currently being mastered at BRing It on Sound in Auckland.

Who produced/engineered the album? How did the tracks come together in the studio, or at home?
I record myself and Gil records herself. Simon Gooding mixed it. Gil recorded the percussion and 50 Hz (Jeremy Geor) programmed his own work at home. Gil and I co-produced the album.

How did the songwriting happen? Are there any overall themes within the songs/album?
I wrote all the tracks except for The Awakening River which is a poem by Katherine Mansfield that I set to music. Most of the tracks were written over the last year. Thematically, the songs cover ups and downs of long term intimacy and family life through various characters and situations – having an argument driving down a motorway or supporting a loved one through the death of a parent or waiting for someone you really fancy to walk through the night club doors. I’ve tried to create a different musical mood and atmosphere for each of those moments.

Were you going for a different sound/approach on this album?
Some of the songs are quite acoustic – guitar/vocals but I’ve used the piano a little more than I have in the past, both compositionally and in performance. We’ve continued to pursue different rhythm and sonic textures throughout the album, giving some of the tracks a large palette.

Was there any specific gear you used to capture that?
Well, a real piano for one! Our new studios have great acoustic isolation for vocals and acoustic guitar ( Takamine) – which was just closed mic’d, using a Neumann that had a Peluso cap in it, put together by engineer Doug Jane. This made for very quick capture of much of the guitar work. Gil used three different basses over the album – acoustic, fretless and the Steinberger. We used protools as our recording programme with various plugins, as does 50Hz to get different synth sounds/ drum patterns/electronica which is enhanced by live percussion from handclaps to the triangle. Gil plays the Eb tenor horn on two of the tracks and the electric guitar I play is a Telecaster. I sing all the vocals using an AKG Perception 400 mic.

Is there a particular single/track that you feel captures the essence of the album?
Maybe the eponymous track ‘Then the Stars Start Singing’ – I think that’s got a lot of those different elements involved and creates it’s own space.

Is there a physical copy available? If not which digital platforms is it available on?
Yes – we’re manufacturing a limited physical release (CD), and it will be available on all the digital platforms too.

Are you working on a video/videos for any of the songs?
Yes – director Emma Robinson is putting together a video for ‘Back For More’, which will be available on Youtube when the album’s released July 28.

Posted in: GeneralInterviewsNew Album

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