Mark Morriss (The Bluetones)
Friday, October 16, Upstairs @ Whelan’s
Acoustic performances: Early & Late Shows
Tickets €14 plus booking fee from WAV Box-Office (Lo-Call 1890 200 078), City Discs, tickets.ie, Ticketmaster outlets nationwide
Early Show: Doors 7pm. Mark Morriss onstage 7.30pm-9pm
Late Show: Doors 9.30pm. Special guest Rhob Cunningham onstage 10pm-10.30pm. Mark Morriss onstage 10.45pm-midnight.
‘Strummed guitars, West Coast melodies featuring James Bond composer David Arnold on strings’¦ astute covers (Teenage Fanclub, LeeHazlewood)’¦ an album that emanates good-natured charm.’ – Q Magazine
‘Britpop survivor and Bluetones front-man goes it alone with eleven gorgeous pop gems. Like lounging outside on a summer’s day.’ – NME
Performing classic Bluetones material and songs from his acclaimed solo album Memory Muscle, Mark Morriss returns to Dublin for two intimate shows Upstairs @ Whelan’s, October 16.
Best known as the frontman in The Bluetones, Mark Morriss has been getting his hands dirty with his own set of songs since 2004.
Last year he started recording the material for his debut solo album Memory Muscle with producer Gordon Mills, enlisting Grammy award winning composer David Arnold along the way: ‘We first met on the set of Little Britain, ironically. We were both making a cameo in the same scene, and it was here that I learnt that he really liked the Bluetones’ music. In fact it was when he was composing the soundtrack to Independence Day that he first heard Expecting To Fly. I was naturally, incredibly flattered, and never dreamed that I’d ever have the chance to work with him.’
Arnold arranged the strings for ‘How Maggie Got Her Bounce Back’, ‘I’m Sick’ and ‘Lay Low’ – he also plays piano on ‘Unwanted Friend’. The album features two covers: a light, mellotron-enhanced twist on Teenage Fanclub’s ‘Alcoholiday’ and the album’s closer is a take on Lee Hazlewood’s ‘My Autumns Done Come’.
The lightness in Memory Muscle is often in the music itself – dark lyrics with warm, sunny arrangements: ‘I wanted to make a Californian kind of album,’ he reveals. ‘I wanted to re-create the sounds of my favourite records when I was a callow youth. It wasn’t stuff from my own generation really, it was music from the West Coast of America in the late 1960s and early 70s – things like Forever Changes, Rumours and Harvest.’
With the release of Memory Muscle Morriss will be hitting the road to share these newly embellished songs with whoever enjoys a persuasive melody and a nifty way with a word.