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Ed Harcourt — Time of Dust EP (2014)

Ed Harcourt — Time of Dust EP (May 19th 2014)

GBR Flag Ed Harcourt — Time of Dust EP
   Eclectic U.K. indie pop singer-songwriter whose beguiling melodicism and languid vocals earned him a cult fanbase.
   Late last year we sent moody troubadour Ed Harcourt to meet and talk with legendary songwriter Jimmy Webb about the release of his new album 'Still Within The Sound Of My Voice'.    Here's what happened next...
Birth name: Edward Henry Richard Harcourt-Smith
Born: August 14, 1977 in Lewes, East Sussex, England
Also known as: Edward Harcourt-Smith
Member of: Snug
Location: Wimbledon, London, England
Album release: May 19th 2014
Record Label: Kid Gloves/Universal
Duration:     28:17
1 Come Into My Dreamland     4:35
2 In My Time of Dust     4:10
3 The Saddest Orchestra (It Only Plays For You)     4:34
4 We All Went Down With the Ship     4:28
5 Parliament of Rooks     5:26
6 Love Is a Minor Key     5:04
2014 Kid Gloves/Universal Publishing
Track-By-Track: Ed Harcourt — Time Of Dust
by MusicOMH | posted on 7 Jan 2014
•   Ed Harcourt follows his sixth album, 2013′s Back Into The Woods, into the New Year with a mini album of new material called Time Of Dust.
•   These are busy times for Harcourt. Aside from his own albums, he co-wrote and produced a new album for Sophie Ellis-Bextor (also set for release this month), appeared at festivals, was musical director for Beck’s Song Book at the Barbican, wrote songs with amongst others Kathryn Williams, Ren Harvieu and Sam Smith, composed soundtracks for three movies due in 2014 and recorded collaborations with Rae & Christian and Nouvelle Vague’s Melanie Pain.
•   Somehow in amongst all this, and touring, and the Christmas break, he found time to pen a track-by-track for Time Of Dust. This is it.
1. Come Into My Dreamland
•   According to the facts in an average lifetime we spend 227,468 hours in the land of nod. That’s about 26 years of dreaming. Yet perhaps we only remember, hmmm a rough estimate here, 0.00000666 % of our dreams? Let’s be honest though, there’s nothing more tedious than someone telling you about the ridiculous dream they just experienced; “and then I was sliding down a hill made of blancmange and a giant Alan Sugar was wearing a snorkel and flapping his arms up and down, and then…” Unless you’re a shaman. Or David Lynch.
•   The protagonist in this song wants to guide you, heal you and ultimately eat your soul. A mystery guest appears on BVs in the 2nd verse, he’s become a very good friend of mine, although I wouldn’t want him round for dinner; terrible eating habits.
2. In My Time Of Dust
•   While we’re on the subject of reveries of rancour, I believe it is the police-state given right of every giant and homunculus to rant and rave at any deluded scapegoat he sees fit. Whether it be snake oil salesmen, Northampton clowns or songwriters who think they’re being clever by vomiting a thesaurus onto the screen, these charlatans must be stopped. Or even thin air actually. Thin air is my only friend.
•   I just remembered I’m talking about my dream in this song. What a loser.
3. The Saddest Orchestra (Only Plays For You)
•   One of my earliest memories is seeing Tom from Tom & Jerry dressed as a conductor, tapping the lectern with his baton and whooshing his impressive and mane-like Beethoven style wig before leading his cartoon feline orchestra into some frenetic score. Turns out that Jerry wants to conduct too so they end up fighting for the position. I always felt Jerry was a bit of a dick. He really makes Tom’s life a total misery.
•   Whilst playing the drums on this song I developed a third arm which really helped with the 2,000 BPM snare roll.
4. We All Went Down With The Ship
•   I’m not sure about this ‘no man is an island’ concept. What about hermits and hoarders? Tom Hanks in Cast Away? Let’s face it, he was a lot more interesting when he was talking to that ball. Are humans really that far removed from lemmings? How many questions am I going to be asking in this section?
•   During research for this song I managed to accidentally record the first ever U-boat sonar ‘ping’. It was a close call as there were some angry looking prawns looking to duff me up but I paid them off in plankton. Look it up, it’s ALL over the net.
5. Parliament Of Rooks
•   Very interesting bird, the rook. Their collective noun evolves from the election process within a rookery. One rook is chosen to squawk and chatter as impressively as he can muster, if the other rooks get his ‘vibe’ he then becomes their leader. If they’re not so enamoured, they peck him to death. Tough gig. It would be funny if they actually did that in the House Of Commons. I would totally watch the BBC Parliament channel all day long. Fortaken: http://www.musicomh.com/
INTERVIEW by CATE BLANCHE; April 8th, 2014 •  
Ed Harcourt: As a songwriter it can be quite hard to dissect and analyse your own songs, they seem to materialise out of thin air, so where do they all come from? Your songs are like chronicles of America and its landmarks, the places you grew up with or passed by. I also feel that the subtlety in your songs says so much more than if you were being blatantly obvious.
Jimmy Webb: Well the landscape has a lot to do with it. I grew up with landscapes that I suppose you could only describe as desolate. I was raised in west Texas and then Oklahoma and then later the Oklahoma pan handle which is the definition of desolate. And very simple surroundings, very rudimentary, no money, father was a minister, he made $100 a week that had to pay for everything. It wasn’t the American dream exactly, but it was interesting in one respect as it was what was left of America’s beginnings, it’s kind of colonial and agricultural.
More at: http://drownedinsound.com/in_depth/4147332-ed-harcourt-meets-jimmy-webb--a-conversation-in-a-windowless-room
Artist Biography by Mark Joseph
•   After the demise of his previous band, Snug, British songwriter Ed Harcourt launched a short-lived career as a chef while continuing to write his own songs. A fan of Tom Waits and Jeff Buckley, he quickly abandoned the kitchen in favor of a solo songwriting career, one that found him progressing from bass guitar (his chief instrument with Snug) to a number of other instruments including the piano, guitar, banjo, and drums. Harcourt proved to be a prolific, genre-hopping musician and spent much of the 2000s on EMI's roster, releasing unique albums whose tracks veered between orchestrated pop, minimalist ballads, and Brit-pop/rock songs.
•   Maplewood, Harcourt's solo debut, sounded like a work in progress upon its release in 2001. Indeed, Heavenly Records issued the four-track recording in its original state, despite Harcourt's original plan to use the atmospheric songs (which were recorded in the rural setting of his grandmother's Sussex house) as demo material. Conversely, 2002's Here Be Monsters was recorded in a proper studio, featuring thickened and enriched versions of some of Harcourt's earlier work. The following year saw the release of From Every Sphere, a stripped-down sophomore effort, and Harcourt toured with Wilco and R.E.M. before releasing his third studio album, Strangers, in 2004.
•   Beautiful Lie arrived two years later, featuring the singer's strongest writing to date. The album had been recorded in the midst of Harcourt's wedding preparations, with soon-to-be wife Gita Harcourt playing violin on several tracks. A greatest-hits compilation, Until Tomorrow Then: The Best of Ed Harcourt, followed in 2007, featuring key tracks from the songwriter's EMI albums as well as a new song entitled "You Put a Spell on Me." The album proved to be Harcourt's last for EMI.
•   Toward the end of the decade, Ed Harcourt aligned himself with New York City's Dovecote Records, which helped him expand his American audience by reissuing The Beautiful Lie in 2008. One year later, the digital release of Russian Roulette whetted anticipation for Harcourt's proper follow-up to The Beautiful Lie, which arrived in the form of 2010's Lustre.
Personal life:
•   Born the third son of a British Army officer, his family home is the manor house of Wootton, East Sussex. He is a great-nephew of the food author Elizabeth David and of Nicholas Ridley, Baron Ridley of Liddesdale, and a great-grand nephew of the one-time mayor of Eastbourne, Roland Gwynne. His brother is noted paleo-anthropologist William Harcourt-Smith. He is married to the singer and musician Gita Harcourt-Smith, née Langley, singer and songwriter in The Langley Sisters. Together, the couple have two children — a daughter named Roxy, and a son named Franklyn.
•♦•   Here Be Monsters (25 June 2001)
•♦•   From Every Sphere (17 February 2003)
•♦•   Strangers (13 September 2004)
•♦•   Elephant's Graveyard (compilation) (8 August 2005)
•♦•   The Beautiful Lie (5 June 2006)
•♦•   Until Tomorrow Then: The Best of Ed Harcourt (15 October 2007)
•♦•   Lustre (14 June 2010)
•♦•   Back Into The Woods (25 February 2013)
•♦•   Time of Dust (6 January 2014)
Website: http://edharcourt.com/
MySpace: https://myspace.com/edharcourt © WOMAD Festival 2013 — Day 3 / WILTSHIRE, UNITED KINGDOM — JULY 27: Ed Harcourt poses for a portrait session on Day 3 of the WOMAD Festival 2013 at Charlton Park on July 27, 2013 in Wiltshire, England. (Photo by Samir Hussein/Getty Images)

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