🐻 🦆 DiS Together Today - It’s the (British) Sea Power Listening Club 🦋 🔫 - Everything Was Forever starts post 452

Right, as trailed in the other Sea Power thread, let’s get this listening club going.

Reminder of the proposed schedule (I’ll aim to do the new record/ ‘week’ kick-off every Sunday or Monday)

Week 1: The Decline of British Sea Power

  • Optional Further Listening and Commentary: Decline Era B-Sides, Demos and Rarities

Week 2: Open Season

  • Optional Further Listening and Commentary: Open Season Era B-Sides, Demos and Rarities

Week 3: Do You Like Rock Music?

  • Optional Further Listening and Commentary: Krankenhaus? EP

Week 4: Man of Aran Soundtrack

  • Optional Further Watching and Commentary: Man of Aran film

Week 5: Valhalla Dancehall

  • Optional Further Listening and Commentary: Zeus EP, Valhalla VIP EP

Week 6: Machineries of Joy

  • Optional Further Listening and Commentary: EPs 1-6

Week 7: Discussion on any or all of From the Sea to the Land Beyond Soundtrack, Happiness Soundtrack and Sea of Brass

Week 8: Let the Dancers Inherit the Party

  • Optional Further Listening and Commentary: Let the Dancers… Alternatives and Disco Elysium Soundtrack

Week 9: Everything Was Forever (plus wrap up and random final polls)

  • Optional Further Listening and Commentary: Everything Was Forever Alternatives

All semi-relevant contributions welcome. I’m looking forward to this

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So let’s get going with Week 1 and the incredible debut that is The Decline of British Sea Power, released in June 2003.

Track list:

  1. “Men Together Today” – 0:41
  2. Apologies to Insect Life” (Hamilton/Noble/Wood/Yan) – 2:47
  3. “Favours in the Beetroot Fields” (Yan) – 1:16
  4. “Something Wicked” (Hamilton) – 3:12
  5. Remember Me” (Yan) – 3:10
  6. Fear of Drowning” (Yan) – 4:26
  7. The Lonely” (Yan) – 5:12
  8. Carrion” (Hamilton/Noble/Wood/Yan) – 4:06
  9. “Blackout” (Hamilton) – 3:48
  10. “Lately” (Yan) – 13:58
  11. “A Wooden Horse” (Yan) – 4:37
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…and for bonus listening this week for anyone interested in going the extra mile on the listening club, there are also a ton of b-sides and other rarities from this era.

This album/ playlist I think has pretty much all of them on - I certainly haven’t heard all of these before or listened to much of these recently so looking forward to some (re)discoveries

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Never been a fan of these lads (great first contribution to the thread, eh?) but I heard Carrion somewhere a little while ago, bunged it onto my current faves playlist and it’s grown into an all timer for me. So I was thinking it was high time to give them a proper go again - this listening club is perfectly timed for me!

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Excited for this, I’m aware this is silly but The Decline is currently my least favourite album by them (I like it but i don’t love it…yet)

I jumped in on Do You Like so I struggle a bit with the rawer sound from them. I like my choirs n’ stuff

Going to rinse it this week and see where I get to.

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That is a lot of extra listening. Those guys were really on one.

I have a fair few of the 7” somewhere so will dig them out for this.

Maybe Sea Power are my favourite band? I don’t really think in those terms and it’s hard to say but I’ve certainly not bought as much shit by anyone else, or seen anyone live as much, or followed anyone so avidly for so long since I first took home the cd of Remember Me, the first time they released it the one with the red card cover, played it and thought oooooooh God. There’s just something about them.

I think Decline is in my top 5 favourite albums by anybody, more often than not top 3. Hit me at just the most perfect time it could have and it really did feel like stepping into a new though bygone world and wow what a bounty of evocative tunes. It seemed so powerfully Romantic. Saying that it’s a little while since I listened to it so will do so before gushing even more about how thrilling it is in Fear Of Drowning when Yan shrieks and a sea of noise folds over him or what a powerfully holy thing Carrion is.

A Sea Power listening club popping up does bring joy to this lily-livered heart and Godspeed to it.

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Thanks for starting this listening club @Rick1

Think I’m with @Flittermouse - maybe Sea Power are my favourite band too. I’m really looking forward to delving into tracks I’ve not heard for years and maybe discovering some new ones from the albums I didn’t get on the hype train for.

I first encountered them at Truck 2003 - they were far too weird for my tiny little mind to handle. I can just about remember loads of foliage and screaming. A few years later I was playing drums in a band and the guitarist had set up a FTP to share ideas and music he was into - sticking out like a sore thumb amongst a load of emo/hardcore stuff like Skycamefalling, This Day Forward and From Autumn To Ashes were Open Season and The Decline Of… as well as a zip of all the B-sides. Initially I found both Yan and Hamilton’s voices too breathy and wispy to get along with but they gradually worked their way in to my head and I’ve never looked back.

Saw them on the DYLRM tour at the Academy in Oxford, 2000 trees, shared a stage with them at Green Man 2009, and have tried to catch them whenever I’ve been in their vicinity ever since. Also my partner and I walked down the aisle to one of their covers when we got hitched but I’ll save revealing which one it was for the appropriate thread.

Lost interest after Valhalla Dancehall but Sea Of Brass and Everything Was Forever pulled me right back in.

Managed to pick up The Decline of… box set off discogs last year for an absolute bargain, and it is by far the best put together box set I own, so looking forward to cracking that open this week.

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So: I actually only came to Sea Power in 2008, during DYLRM? times. But I fairly quickly caught up on what I’d missed: my local library had a CD copy of Decline, which I borrowed and ripped, as was the style at the time. So while I don’t have any experience of the actual Decline era, I got into it hard in retrospect.

It’s just an astonishing album isn’t it? I can think of very few albums that create a whole vivid world of their own, but this is one of them. Every detail is so distinctive and so consistent.

It’s perfectly sequenced as an album too. Even though they had stacks of AAA-grade material around this time that ended up as B-sides, I don’t think I would swap any of them in. The first three tracks / five minutes are a hell of a start, super-spiky and intense. Then it gives over to the warm soft rush of the the organ on Something Wicked. Remember Me through to Blackout is an amazing mix of big guitar, deep melancholy and vivid imagery. Then colossal Lately, which is still impressive in scale (and the feedback at the end, very exciting). Then a beautiful closer / epilogue.

How can you do this as a debut album? It’s absurd. I must have listened to it hundreds of times, could probably run through most of it in my head if I tried to, and yet it still feels somewhat mysterious. And then there’s the B-sides… (more on that later)

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An absolutely astonishing record to be honest. Yes, I’m incredibly familiar with it, but it’s one of the only debut records that continues to impress on me how good it is. Almost like being surprised each time I listen.

Like @hardworking, I came to them later on for DYLRM? Saw them 3 times on that tour in the space of a fortnight and was hooked. Very quickly got hold of what I could from their back catalogue and rinsed it hard.

The Decline of… though. Wow. Always wow. A blistering opening 3 tracks, which then gives way into the dreamy, soft belly of the album. Fear of Drowning is top 10 all time song material. It’s so good. Closing the album with a powerful 14 minute epic Lately and a piano number is a hell of a call. At no point does it feel flabby, the tracklisting is spot on. Just an incredible experience to be able to continue listening to this album and feel like it’s the first time. Very rare that I experience that now. The world and space the album creates is unlike anything I’ve listened to. The album sleeve design plays into that too.

It’s a shame in a way that their debut has been the peak of their output, but they’ve carved out a nice little groove since.

I don’t really know the B-Sides too well though, so looking forward to delving deep into those.

What a record. What a record.

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Starts off as a brilliant modern punk album and slowly unfolds into something completely different and pretty unique before your ears. Absolutely loved it at the time it came out and was into Open Season too, saw them at Bath Moles, then they kind of fell off my radar for some reason so I’ll be joining in with this and catching up. I’m not really a long song guy but Lately is so good.

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Lately really doesn’t feel like a 14 minute long song to me.

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If it did I’d never have made it through. 4 minutes is usually too long for me.

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I feel like when I put it on time just speeds up. There’s so much going on in the song and so much forward movement. It doesn’t really happen to me with any other song.

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Their Jools Holland appearance from that time is just pure joy!

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Pissed off this cuts off before the end. Loved this performance.

What happens at the end? Ah just seen. Yeah that’s annoying

Song just carries on a bit, continues to escalate and get a bit more frantic. Yan does some cool yelping and then makes a pair of glasses with his hands as he stares out at the audience as the song ends

Always thought it was pretty cool.

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Ah, good ol’ Dailymotion!

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Oh it’s SO good! Easy to see what we fell for isn’t it, so much happening. I love the bridge in Carrion on the record (not sure I really understand it though) interesting that it’s totally different in that performance and then has a bit of The Lonely in it too.

There’s some fascinating, imo, demo’s from this era. A lot to wade through but I really like this one of Carrion which has totally different verses and the chorus is pretty much all there

Big fan of this too with its traces of Carrion lyrical ideas in the chorus they ended up ditching

They were all in that big Decline reissue and I think on Spotify too

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