Sunday, November 20, 2005

Kim Salmon & The Surrealists - The Surreal Feel

Kim Salmon & The Surrealists - The Surreal Feel

Kim Salmon on Black Eye Records (from email 2003) : "My connection with Black Eye began when I had my band The Surrealists in Perth after the demise of The Scientists in 1987. We quickly formed, did a series of shows round Perth and after which I took the band into a rehearsal room with a borrowed 4 track TEAC reel to reel. I was in a hurry to record it as Brian and Tony the other two members were both leaving town for good. Using the rehearsal room mics I placed round the room I got the band to play some of the material live. I also deliberately got them to play some material that they hadn't heard and recorded that before they got a chance to learn it or even be comfortable with it. This was deliberately Lo-Fi. When I took the tape home I didn't have a mixing desk so I just played it through my stereo and placed a cassette recorder near the speakers. I sent this off to Black Eye as they were the only label I could think of that would consider such a primitive sort of demo. Tex (Perkins) and the guys from Thug heard it and loved it persuading John Foy that it was appropriate for the label. I went into a studio in Sydney when I was in town doing some Beasts of Bourbon shows. Up until this point the record had cost $60 to record. I always say that's what the record cost because its a better story than to mention the mixing and tarting up costs that John (Foy) fronted. The Surrealists continued to make records almost the same way. I'd be in Melbourne or Sydney for one reason or other (I still lived in Perth at this time), we'd organize some dodgey shows, have a rehearsal and get more material together (actually I'd show the other two the songs and they'd play along until it sounded good) and go into a studio and get it down quick. that's how "Just Because You Can't See It" & "Essence" were done. My only other connection with that Black Eye scene was really being one of the founding members of Salamander Jim. I started that with Tex. We just wanted to have a guitar, singer and drummer. After going through, the worlds worst drummer, then Billy Pommer Junior we settled on Richard Ploog. I don't remember the material that well other than it was a kind of minimalist bluesy rockabilly hybrid. The later lineup did record a song of mine from then called Ugly Breakfast...anyway.. I left early to move to UK to take up with The Scientists, and they continued on with a different lineup and went a whole different way...."

The Cover Art story of The Surreal Feel from John Foy Black Eye Records founder: "...That was an actual shoot that was totally born out of the heads of me and Russell Kilbey under the name of Russell Paper then. As part of keeping Black Eye separate from Red Eye Russell being one of the regular photographers for us at that time decided to keep his work Black Eye separate too. Russell did several Black Eye photo shoots for us. It was a great shoot it was particularly amusing because Kim doesn’t like fish and we had to wrap a fish tail in gladwrap and place it in his mouth to achieve some of the effect. So we had to stand there adnursium while we snapped away but it was an actual set up shoot. We did quite a few set up shoots like that and again it was like wearing that hat of art director that the end result was certainly a shared thing. Tex did the font, I did a lot of the cut and paste and Russell’s photography is supreme on that. And it total went with the content of the time of the Blue Velvet there a definite link with that film right down to the run out groove messages. It was just evidence that on certain records that you don’t need a budget, it’s the content powering over any other sort of force and great example of it. It was definitely a large factor over what Black Eye was about; it was all about the content and capturing the moment. There wasn’t time to sit around and analyze it and market it and dress it up think about which demographic it was gonna hit like a conventional record might demand. It was the whole Black Eye thing was very enjoyable for that reason...." This album was later re-issued on CD by In The Red Records and can be bought from Amazon here

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