When You Were a Tadpole and I Was a Fish took me swimming with stingrays and eels and the ghosts of grinning phantom f*bunnies down a tugging whirlpool of insinuating sound.
I don't even know what I just said.
The album is an absolute marvel of musicianship and technical virtuosity with shimmering vocals throughout.
The evolution theme coincidentally undergirds my whole spiritual journey of the last couple years, and the lyrics are so coolly surreal that they could be advertisements for Brahma or Beelzebub, who cares? The creative force of kaleidoscopic Ken and ever-blossoming April is a synergistic poem-package to be reckoned with.
Is your stuff still considered neo-Celtic? How would programmers classify it, market it, whatever?
Or would they all just get naked and dance?"
~ JOHN SLADE
The making of
WHEN YOU WERE A TADPOLE AND I WAS A FISH
Eons came and eons fled since the band's last album lovedeathbeauty (2004) and April Theriault had this to say about the creation and direction of the new release…
The opening track "Evolution" came by a circuitous route. My father is the unwitting narrator--his voice brought to life from a 1952 recording of the classic Langdon Smith poem "Evolution: A Fantasy". This is my mother's account of how the recording came to be:
"It was part of Doug's theory about using sleep teaching as a therapy tool, as part of his project when he was studying for his Master's Degree at the University of Michigan. The University of Michigan Speech Pathology Dept. gave him permission to try a sleep-teaching project on me, and instructed him to find something to record about some subject that he was sure I had never heard before. I agreed to be a participant in this project without any knowledge of what it was. That poem about Evolution was Doug's choice, and he recorded himself reading it in the UM laboratories. Later, he placed a little speaker under my pillow, which was timed to start playing approximately 2-3 hours after I had fallen asleep.
It wasn't long before I began to tell him I was dreaming about tadpoles in the mud. This all took place in our little student trailer in Ann Arbor, Michigan. It really was a pioneer study in the 1950s as sleep teaching was a technique which was totally unrecognized at that time as a valid tool in any profession."
I had already written the lyrics for "Evolution Died" and "Bedtime With Sally", and we were getting a feel for deep-watery-space-past-and-future stuff. We wrote the music around the poem, and left the scratches and imperfections as they were on the original recording--a fitting testament to the journey and survival of the actual physical record, as well as to our greater evolutionary journey.
~ April Theriault, January 5, 2014
The palette of sounds is large and varied, combining acoustic instruments (silver and wooden flutes, tin whistle, accordion, cittern, sitar) with Eastern percussion, electric bass, thunderous drums and guitars, all tied together with rich male and female vocals and lush harmonies.
Often blending world and trip-hop beats, Celtic melodies and contemporary, pop and electronica elements, the band frequently blurs the lines between genres -- whether it be an original composition or an unexpected arrangement of a traditional song. The result is a dynamic and cinematic soundscape that is unique, exciting and fresh.
vocals, guitars, bass,
cittern, sitar, programming
vocals, accordion, piano,
synths, fancy feet, decor
vocals, silver and wooden flutes,
tin whistle, synths
Click titles below for album details,
samples and purchases:
Daniel Ash and Kevin Haskins (Bauhaus, Tones on Tail, Love and Rockets), actor Malcolm McDowell, vocalist Perla Batalla, producer Patina Crème, narrator Douglas J. Theriault and drummer Robert Rachelli join together as special guests.
Special guests Eric Rigler (Titanic, Braveheart, Bad Haggis), Austin Wrinkle (PLOTZ!, Hands On'Semble), John Zeretzke, Jack Joshua, Jeff Evans, and Robert Rachelli contribute throughout.
Guest artists Eric Rigler (Titanic, Braveheart, Bad Haggis), Aaron Plunkett, Suzanne Morissette, Steve Emery, Candy Lerman Girard, and the Ahhvo Grove Singers join on this album.