We've been here for almost a week now so thought we'd do a little blog to let you know what we've been up to. We came down on Monday and moved into our lovely little Cottage for the month on Linleys Farm. And what a great little place, Jay's got his wood burning fire, we've all got our own bed's (Ben and Kieran are in "adult-sized bunk beds"!) and its perfectly placed to allow us to get back and forth to Real World quickly.
Monday afternoon we moved all our music equipment into the Millside where we are doing our 2 weeks of pre-production. Its quite an odd place, a converted agricultural "hanger", but suits us perfectly - especially after the heating had been on for a couple of days! As most of you will know, we have a lot of instruments so to have them all in one room is quite a horde - especially when the plan is to add MORE sounds to the band for recording!
Tuesday was a long day as we were determined to get all 22 songs we were putting forward for the album up to scratch. To break up the days, we are having lunch in the Real World Canteen, lovingly and expertly prepared by the on-site chef, Jerome - our small piece of luxury in what are long and taxing days! It's all worth it though, as we are all adamant that this album will be as special as we can make it.
Wednesday saw the arrival of Steve Osborne, who is producing the album. Having only met him once before, and knowing he had worked with some very well known artists and produced some massive records, the morning was a mixture of excitement, nerves and trepidation as we awaited his arrival.
As it turned out, we had nothing to be worried about. Steve has at times seemed as excited about making this record as we are. To explain the role he has played thus far is difficult, and also the part he plays in the creative process that we go through with every song, but in short he has what we have dubbed "ninja ears". He isn't changing our sound, or making us "un-Urusen", but bringing the best out of us, both in terms of the songs and their arrangements and instrumentation, and each of us as individuals as far as our roles in the band and in each song.
We don't want to give too much away, but the process has thus far yielded electric guitars, a cappella vocal sessions, plus some potential string quartet action! More importantly we're very excited with the way things are beginning to shape up, and we're relishing the fact that we have another full week before we start recording.
On the subject of next week, we're going to be doing a special showcase gig inside the rehearsal studio on Thursday night. The event details are on our facebook page, so let us know if you're local and fancy popping along for a sneak preview of what you might hear on the album!
That's it for now, the weekend promises a bit of relaxation, and so far the odd snowball fight with our neighbours, but we have some homework for Steve due in on Monday so not all rest! Keep in touch through all the usual channels, we're going to try and put some videos up soon so keep an eye out for them!