Monday, 18 January 2010


Well that was a bit of a start and a half to the year!
Looking out today, that crazily heavy snowfall of the last two weeks has all but disappeared and if it weren't for the last few remaining tell tale signs- a once majestic igloo now reduced to an ungainly pile of slushy rubble, a notable quantity of healthy branches torn and strewn like limbs ripped from their sockets-and a colourful array of random gloves once lost during must- have snowball fights now lying in patient wait, secretly pining for their other halves- yes, without this small collection of reminders you could almost have been fooled into thinking that the old dream department just went into overdrive one night and you found yourself drifting around the stage set of Narnia for two weeks. But it didn't, and you were!

Truly, how could we forget waking to a fantasy world whipped into peaks of glistening ice crystals, who had silently and diligently danced their way through the dark night and on into the small hours- and boy did they party hard! I mean that was proper top grade stuff- none of that wimpy-you can look but you can't touch type of gear that we usually get. No this was snow WORTH disrupting us for!
I have loved that eerie stillness, I have loved trekking through snow up to my knees, I have loved just staying put, I have loved striking up conversations with strangers, I have loved the fact that tins of spam ( yes, spam! )were one of the most popular items flying off supermarket shelves. O.k I grant you it's nice to be able to get out and about again, but snow, a part of me is missing you!

However, the greatest benefit to this current thawing process was that this past weekend saw a much longed for re-communing with all things Sunsoma- we hadn't been able to meet in A G E S -it was good to be back! As per usual we set up shop and wasted no time getting stuck into our latest track. The bones of the song were pretty much in place before the Christmas break, so it was a matter of finishing lyrics, arrangements and just generally seeing if any musical gaps were still crying out to be filled. I am seriously into this song, and not just because it's the one we happen to be working on. I think I just love the melody and the whole feel. There is such a strong guitar solo in the outro too that just takes me away...somewhere... far!! As yet my biggest hurdle is trying to find a title- I've tried a few but all were definitely too cheesy. I think I said in an earlier blog that creating a title is like giving your song a face. I still stick by that, so looks like I'm gonna need to dig a little deeper with this one. It's funny the things we get stuck on. You'll be the first to know though when she's got her new face on, promise!

As Sunday's daylight hours drifted seamlessly into evening and a productive and extended 'sesh' had left us all feeling more than encouraged, we delivered Lee safely home into the arms of Pompeii and were left to reflect on our progress as we drove away through streaky pockets of fog listening to the sounds of Bon Iver echoing around the van. Can't think of a better way to wind up the weekend! ( I can actually- snow patrol playing an impromptu acoustic set for us in the back of the van!! ) That would be a hard one to top.

Speak soon! Peace y'all Mel xx.

Friday, 1 January 2010


Happy New Year all Ye festive revellers!!! I trust that you've been actively steeping yourselves in Christmas cheer and enjoying all the benefits that a break from the normal routine of life allows. Ours was surprisingly mobile this year- Ian and I took a trip to Spicerville ( which is basically anywhere that 2 or more Spicers are gathered! )- our rellies are reasonably scattered about, so we took the opportunity to jump in the trusty van and descend on various family members' houses. We only got lost once- but please can somebody enlighten me- why do I always end up getting instructions from people who have obviously graduated with a supersized A star in wild goose chasing??? Have these guys finally fulfilled a lifetime ambition as their wildly inaccurate utterances send us hurtling off in COMPLETELY the wrong direction? Do they secretly chuckle under their bobble hats? Why why why oh why? ( counting to ten is now in progress )..... When we eventually pulled up my annoyance was however rapidly realigned as we were showered with hospitality and lashings of tiramisu, and a good time of bonding and joviality was had by all. Tomorrow is our grand festive finale- a sizeable proportion of the clan have booked ourselves into a hotel for the weekend to slightly belatedly but no less sincerely welcome in 2010. Should be boisterous, girlsterous and muchos fun!! Oh and we know the way, so no sign of geese anywhere!

Before I move on, how could we forget that timely and hearty back drop to our last few days of preparations? -O yes, I'm talking BIG WHITE FLUFFY SNOW! The late December sky truly gave us its' gleeful best and laced our days with bloomin' mountains of the stuff!! - I am totally and unashamedly a complete sucker for that wondrous, icy precipitation- those first few moments of re-acquaintance still make my heart beat faster and still make me feel about five. I know our cars get stuck and we have to take the day off work ( shame ) but it was magical weren't it?!

O.K so having just about resurfaced and dusted down our limbs from the inevitable seasonal excesses, are we all feeling gently
yet fervently 'revved' for all that this sparkling, as yet untrodden landscape of a new decade has to offer? I hope so! This is early days, I haven't really done more than put my big toe on it, but it feels good- better than last year- can't say why, but it does!
As I reflect on the events of 2009, the title of this blog I hope conveys a mixed bag of a year- the good and the not so good, the remarkable and the unremarkable, the peaks and the lack of them. For me personally, it has undeniably been a time of learning, challenge, stretching and all those things we mostly try to avoid given half the chance! But without them we don't actually go anywhere very far at all, and life has to be for going somewhere doesn't it? I have had to tackle my lyric writing somewhat more severely- it's not enough that I know what I'm talking about- what about you? If I don't leave you with something or move you in some way then I am doing you nothing more than a very large disservice. God forbid that I should ever learn to excel in that.

As the 3 of us continue to write together, sooner or later more of the missing pieces begin to present themselves- songs are definitely similar to people- they are not always what they seem to be, they can strut a coquettish moment of inspiration before you, only to withdraw into the shadows leaving you with tantalising fragments- it can take months or even years to find the rest. Some songs are wolves in sheeps' clothing- they lull you into thinking they are gentle, tiny songs but in reality they are giant anthems fit only for stadium consumption. Whatever characteristics a song may exhibit they each have a story to tell, an emotion they are longing to share with you. If you are any good, you will find ways to bring those stories out and come somewhere close to explaining those emotions.

I had hoped to be able to neatly say we had ended our year with all the demos complete- we didn't quite get there although we are not that far off. Life isn't neat , it spills over and interrupts you sometimes, so you do your best to manoeuvre around, through and above whatever comes your way, whilst still inching forward towards your goal. The inches have now become feet and 2010 WILL be the year of SINKING TO THE TOP! I am both excited and honoured to work with Ian and Lee and to see all our endeavours unfold.
You Rock guys!! Thanks for reading much love Mel xxx
P.S: How long does a blog have to be before it has officially turned into a small book?!