Lucky Cat is Nick's third solo album in four years. It comes hot on the heels of his sophomore release, Closing Time At Yah Yah's, and it couldn’t be more different. Departing from the familiar dark, folk tones he has become known for, Lucky Cat sparkles with jangle and power pop gems, which were a trademark of his 1990’s band, The Earthmen. So why the sudden turnaround?
“On acoustic guitar or piano I normally write dark songs, sorting my shit out day by day. Once in a while an upbeat tune falls across my fingers and I stash it away, scared that it betrays me. These misfit songs reached critical mass and I could deny them no more.”
Lucky Cat is upbeat and bright whilst preserving Nick's characteristic dark humour and acidic observations.
“Curvy girls on High Street swear
Knitting bombs on the bike racks
Where the boys pass them by
To craft is to slowly die” - Lonely Boys Of Brunswick
The production is lush and dense. Cascading guitars with charging drums and loopy bass. Layers of vocal harmonies adorn each song like snow on a mountain of rock.
Lucky Cat came about because of the forthcoming release of a retrospective of Nick’s 90’s guitar-pop band, The Earthmen. “I listened to all the old demos of unreleased songs I wrote for the band. I found a few that I thought were worth revisiting, so I recorded them. Along with the more recent up-tempo tracks that didn’t fit the mood of my two recent solo albums, I suddenly had a record.”
With the songs already written, the recording process was quick and easy. "I didn't want to get bogged down, second guessing what's right or wrong, questioning what I'm trying to say. The songs are fun and I wanted to stay spontaneous - plug in a guitar, turn it up, whack a mic on it, hit record and go nuts. If it’s fun to make, maybe it’s fun to listen to."
The album was recorded and mixed by Nick in his own studio with musical contributions by chums from The Earthmen and Cordrazine - Hamish Cowan, Nick Murray, Craig Mitchell and Jethro Woodward.
"The title track was written about a star fucker. I was jealous that I wasn't star enough to draw her attention.”
"No fanfare, just worn out by degrees
Pray a knight will come and sweep you off your knees
Keep moving, don't believe the worst is true
Eight of your lives are through" - Lucky Cat
The title suits the album. “I do feel lucky - I get to write and record the music I want, release it into the world, then perform it with my best friends. For my many mistakes, I'm lucky to be where I am."
PB099 Nick Batterham : Lucky Cat is out soon on Popboomerang Records.
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