Sanity & Gravity


Gary Sanctuary : Keyboards

Mick Karn : Bass

Sultan Khan : Sarangi & Vocals

Dave Stewart : Keyboards

Richard Barbieri : Keyboards

Jakko Jakszyk : Guitar

Ian Kirkham : Ewi (electronic wind instrument)

John Thirkell : Trumpet & Flugel horn

Lyndon Connah : Mini Moog

Heitor Pereira : Acoustic guitar

Buy It From Here


Faced with the prospect of making a 'solo' drum album I decided I would take a more experimental approach to playing my instrument, rather than make a record of fast flashy solos and fills to try and show off my technique. Drums traditionally have a purpose in music to supply and hold a tempo. After all there isn't any really definable pitches coming out of the drumset that you would want to try to play melodies on in the normal sense.

But I felt there was still a way to express emotion from the drums played with the attitude of "blowing" on a saxophone or "twiddling" around on a piano. These "squiggle" pieces or sections (as I call them) would start with me recording the drums on their own without any pre- defined tune, arrangement, or tempo.

The only thing I would have as a guide would be the engineer signaling to me how many minutes had past because I couldn't really tell how much time was passing whilst I was in this "liquid" state of mind. Of course listening back, many of the pieces turned out to be just too random for me - but there were some - that I felt had a good balance compositionally between playing time and playing expressively "out there in space" on the drums.

These pieces would then form the basis of a new composition with which the brilliant keyboardist Gary Sanctuary would "react" with and overdub to. Dave Stewart did an equally great thing as a " drum and piano solo " section in a piece called "Big News For A Small Day". So we ended up with tunes where (in certain sections) the drums were the "leading" voice (in a kind of melodic but non solo way) and the rest of the composition was built up around the original drum performance - as tempo based or random as that was! You can hear an example of this kind of idea in the "Big News" sample. Other, more groove based tunes started life as "jams" between Mick Karn, Gary Sanctuary and myself. I wanted to try and find some more alternative stranger types of groove. Check out "Aim" & "Dog Day". Then other musicians would come and play on top / underneath / or around the various rhythms and "squiggles" (when they occurred) and I would have chance to edit their collective performances into a kind of "collage" procedure.