- The Death of Quickspace - ole-433 - 2000-03-21
The Death of Quickspace
Born in the mid 90s pre-Steps, pre-Blair, pre-Who wants to be a Millionaire?* Baby Quickspace very nearly became an infant mortality statistic when it caught a chill from the draught of chequebooks waved by major label fat cats who pursued them feverishly in their formative fortnight.
Initially, in a premonition of the rotating squad system employed by many of today’s top football teams, line ups changed drastically and dramatically with band members leaving, coming back and then leaving again sometimes all during the same song. Legend has it that uncertainty over who was and wasn’t in the group became so confusing that Quickspace shows are said to have taken place with no official members whatsoever taking the stage. One night at Camden’s Dublin Castle former Faith Healer Tom Cullinan walked in on one of these unfortunate performances, though memories have faded more reliable accounts recall that his attempts to call a halt to the proceedings were hampered by the beer-sticky floor which left him rooted to the spot. It is widely held that this was the moment that a more settled team was arrived at.
Setting up their own Kitty Kitty Corporation to release music instinctively at odds with current trends Quickspace have remained equally as enigmatic to this day. Their chaotic, frenzied live shows have inspired, baffled and entertained across icy Northern Europe and recent outings to Spain and Italy have spread the gospel to the balmy south. Veterans of four John Peel sessions (the band recorded a cover of the Misunderstood’s neo-psychedelic masterpiece ‘I Can Take You To The Sun’ for his 60th birthday) and in the wake of the classic double lp ‘Precious Falling’ and a brace of spikey pop classic singles (“Happy Song #2” and “The Lobbalong Song”) to discover their new opus proclaims ‘The Death of Quickspace’ is an point of concern for all not-quite-right minded individuals.
The album was once again recorded in a barn in the wilds of Staffordshire but this time in the knowledge that the pine forest that had sheltered them on previous visits was due for the chop. By day, our intrepid heroes skipped through the woods to the tune of birdsong (“Cape”) and Tom’s bohemian violin reels (“Lobbalong Song”) while as night fell, Nina Pascalle’s caterwauling (“Gloriana”) and the plague-ground taunt that is “Munchers” only just kept the devils at bay. This is not, however, simply a story of Blair-Witch style lo-fi paranoia as the story ends with their finest moment to date Flat Tune Society (oops that’s “Flat Moon Society”) restrained and circumspect yet both stately, marmoreal and all ends up an epic of Ben Hur proportions (that’s the never before seen director’s cut where before the chariot race Charlton Heston blows his own brains out in the name of the fifth amendment)
With the dearly departed Bob Marley hitting the charts alongside Lauren Hill and late lamented John Lennon to reappear with the Beatles this New Year’s Eve, the Grim Reaper suggesting a few chord changes is no longer a barrier to further artistic endeavour, but let’s hope that Quickspace continue kick out the jams before they do eventually kick the bucket.
Tom Cullinan: Guitar/Vocals
Nina Pascale: Guitar/Vocals
Paul Shilton: Keyboards
Steve d’Enton: Drums
Sean Newsham: Bass
4/14/00 — From the “While our hearts were sad to see them go, our livers felt otherwise” department:
After a week’s worth of dates on the Yo La Tengo tour through the Midwest and another week playing their way back to NYC, Quickspace ended their first US sojourn with a raucous hour-long performance on WFMU on Monday that sounded spectacular via my G3/T1 connection. Perhaps, we can put this up on the website soonish.
Sorry, West Coast... perhaps, next time. Meanwhile, you can take solace in the shape of the new Quickspace single coming up in a couple months that will have two brand new track on a 7" (“The Flat Moon Society” and “Semtex”) and the same two tracks plus two new versions of “Death of...” tracks (a sped-up version with an extra verse “The Lobbalong Song” & “The Munchers” with vocals) on the CD5.
12/13/1999 — In March, well be releasing a new album by a band we've wanted to work with for way too long. Quickspace are a London based quintet who have released a gang of great singles and two excellent albums on their own Kitty Kitty Corp. label. The 2nd of these albums, Precious Falling was reissued in the U.S. last year by Hidden Agenda and some of us still haven't recovered from it. Quickspace, founded by former Th' Faith Healers guitarist Tom Cullinan, have long employed Neu-ish repetition and a sound that's equal parts beauty and violence, but the newer stuff is spinning into directions we're having trouble keeping up with. Said one commentator, "you'll feel yourself being propelled by a primal force called pop ecstasy (hey, remember that?) down an autobahn of hallucino-distorto-joy." Sheesh, I wish we hadn't mentioned that, but what's a little hyperbole in the name of heating? But even for those of you who long ago swore off the happy smokes, Quickspace are amazing. The new album The Death Of Quickspace is coming in March, followed by the band's first North American tour.