In March 2003, Ill Starred Captain Hooked up again with engineer Dave Lokan at Big Sound studio in Adelaide, to record the band’s first full –length cd “Yeh Nah”. The” Life situation” the band was in at the time, with Justin Francis living mostly in Ireland while Scott Bassham was based in Port LincolnSouth Australia, meant that a lot of work had to happen in short bursts of time. Despite this, Ill Starred Captain had been maintaining a very full touring schedule around Australia, and fitted in three tours of Ireland and the U.K., playing a mix of venues and beer barns as a pretty much, totally unknown band.
All this “cross hemispherical” journeying certainly found it’s way into the fabric of “Yeh Nah” with a definite Irish Feel in the music and subject matter of some songs, while other tracks were definitely born out of the immense, powerful landscapes of Australia, across which the band had spent the last few years traveling. The song on which the Australian sound collided with the Irish most is without a doubt the instrumental track “Devil Jumped Up” which was equally inspired by Irish trad innovators Planxty and Australian punk rock legends The Saints. Other songs, like Whistling down the wind and Silver Top Cane Blues occupy a sparser and more desert like space.
For the first time, the record really reflected the sound of Ill Starred Captain live, with the songs captured mostly live in the studio. Despite sharing a two piece set up with bands like the White Stripes and the Black Keys, Ill Starred Captain’s sound began to take on a form of it’s own that is very different from those bands. The musical influences on display on Yeh Nah range from the moody spaciousness of the Triffids, the trash punk of the New York Dolls and the edge of feedback guitar scapes of Texan band Lift to Experience. The Celtic spirit is reflected on ballads like One Day in the summertime and the nostalgic roll of Irish Hitch – Hiking, both songs reflecting the emotional and musical connection to Ireland shared by both band members.
After scrapping the first attempt at recording Yeh Nah, due to extreme poverty and drunken – ness at the sessions, the band put in a focused effort, locking themselves in the studio for a couple of 3-5 day sessions, and just tried their best to capture all the music and madness of their first three years of existence. The band signed a product and development deal with Adelaide’s legendary Greasy Pop records and released “Yeh Nah” in 2005. Unfortunately the release turned out to be difficult, with band / record company disputes aplenty and many lessons learned. Yeh Nah however is an album that the band is proud of, despite all the trauma of its birth, and is becoming a much loved addition to music collections all over the world.
1) Live Feed: Just because you sold your soul does not mean you deserve our blood. 2) One Day in the Summertime: All we are is islands hiding in the mist. 3) Devil Jumped Up:....and grabbed me widget for stealing another mans turf! 4) Silver Top Cane Blues: Nowhere Else....it exists, it ant on a map,but you can find it if you look. 5) Whistling Down The Wind: All the desert children,waiting patiently..... 6) Trouble: He smashed his own mandola, the only good thing he had left. 7) No change/All Change: standing on a corner,her eyes are black with tears. 8) Mockingbirds: Protect yourself from those who pretend to be protecting you. 9) Irish Hitchhiking: Ah,those were the days,young with no compass..... 10) Turn it On: Coastal opiate dream.
WORDS & MUSIC: SCOTT BASSHAM PRODUCED BY JUSTIN FRANCIS & SCOTT BASSHAM RECORDED: MARCH – MAY 2003, BIGSOUND STUDIOS, ADELAIDE HILLS, LENSWOOD, SOUTH AUSTRALIA ON ANALOGUE RECORDING EQUIPMENT ENGINEERED AND RECORDED BY DAVE LOKAN MIXED BY DAVE LOKAN, SCOTT BASSHAM & JUSTIN FRANCIS MASTERING: DAVE LOKAN REMASTERED: BY DAVE LOKAN & JUSTIN FRANCIS NOVEMBER 2010 WORDS & MUSIC COPYRIGHT SCOTT BASSHAM 2003. YEH-NAH L.P. COPYRIGHT SEAWITCH MUSIC 2005 ART WORK - Kathryn Murphy at Big Roar studio's