Andy Bell – The ‘Ever Decreasing Circles’ Series
Ride guitarist and singer Andy Bell releases three new EPs and a compilation album between April and June this year. The ‘Ever Decreasing Circles’ series begins on April 9, with The Indica Gallery EP, a six-track 12” and digital release featuring five songs from Andy’s acclaimed debut solo album The View From Halfway Down reworked by electronic experimentalist Pye Corner Audio, along with a re-edit of one of the remixes by Andy himself, in his GLOK guise.
It will be followed by the See My Friends EP (four-track 10” and digital) featuring two further Pye Corner Audio reworkings on May 14 and the All On You EP (four-track 7” and five-track digital) of acoustic radio session versions on June 11; Another View, a CD compiling all 15 tracks from the three EPs, will be out on the same day.
“Each release in the series will be smaller in size than the last, so we start with a 12”, then a 10”, a 7” and CD,” says Andy of the concept, “so that was the reason for the name ‘Ever Decreasing Circles’, a figurative and fond nod to the ’80s Richard Briers sitcom. I like the idea that the EPs represent fainter and fainter echoes of The View From Halfway Down and, as such, can be visualised as water splashes reducing in size on a pond, much like the shots at the start of each episode of the sitcom! Pretentious, moi?”
“Martin [Jenkins, aka Pye Corner Audio] has been top of my list of people to work with ever since a monumental night at the Social, late 2019. It was Sonic Cathedral’s 15th birthday party and Pye Corner Audio was headlining, with bdrmm and myself playing live sets. It was a bit of a legendary night and, before it was over, Martin and I had agreed we would work together on something, sometime. I wasn’t sure he’d remember the conversation, but luckily he did.”
“We ended up setting the world to rights over a few beers and some questionable shots,” says Martin, taking up the story. “One of the topics that came up was the possibility of working together in some form or other, and as a long-time Ride follower I was obviously in agreement. It gave me a great deal of pleasure working on these remixes and I think they’re a fitting a companion piece to the album.”
“A highlight is his version of ‘Skywalker’,” says Andy. “It’s not so much a remix, more a sparkling electronic makeover. However, I think the beauty of Pye Corner Audio is how Martin works with slower tempos and that’s why I think he’s done such a tremendous job with tunes like ‘Cherry Cola’ and ‘Indica’.
“Martin agreed to remix an EP’s worth of songs from the album [which forms The Indica Gallery EP, credited to Andy Bell meets Pye Corner Audio uptown as an acknowledgement of their meeting in The Social], but then he contacted me to say he’d heard ‘The Commune’ and could he remix that as well? This is one of my favourites of the seven remixes he’s done. He ended up reworking both sides of my debut single, so they have now become their own release, along with the original single tracks remastered by Heba Kadry, as the See My Friends EP.
“Some of my acoustic session tracks complete the vinyl trio, as the All On You EP. Last year I was lucky enough to be invited to record sessions for several radio stations – one of the only ways I could promote the album as we were in the midst of lockdown when the record came out. XS Manchester asked if could record a cover of a song by a Manchester artist, so I chose ‘Perfume’ by Paris Angels as it’s a song I’ve always loved, ever since it came out in 1990.
“When it came to the CD, we luckily had room to include everything. I think about it as a kind of Hatful Of Hollow in that it collects session versions of debut album tracks, along with previously single only tracks and brand new versions. The title, Another View, is a nod to The Velvet Underground’s odds and sods collection.”