Edie and Mabel were black and white cats who were rescued from a bin by humans. In the city they were house cats where they learned how to chase a ball, play with pasta and pee in a box. When they were about one year old the two wee cats and the humans moved away to a nice place by the sea that had forests and mountains. This meant Edie and Mabel could go outside for the first time.
Mabel was smaller and seemed a bit nervous sometimes, but it might have been because she was just being careful because of her size. She was very vocal and encouraged Edie to come out to play. “Meow”.
Timid yet curious, both cats Jumped out of the window and over the wall. Surprise! They were met with a soft but cold wind and they could hear layers upon layers of new sounds at all distances surrounding them. Tweeting birds, creaking trees and drainpipes dripping. It was a noisy place and very strange. The texture of the grass was unexpected and a bit much, so Edie jumped back inside to sit beside the fire.
As the year went on the weather got warmer and they got more confident in the outside world. It became a big part of their day. Together Edie and Mabel would go outside to play with the bees, crawl through the trees and sniff the breeze. Although it had been a few months now since the first time, everything still seemed fresh, new and exciting. It was always changing with flowers growing in the garden as cute as them.
As they got older Edie became known as Big Cat and Mabel was still really quite small, so she was known as Small Cat. Like two sides to a coin they developed strong personalities that complemented each other. Mabel would be out more, Edie sat beside the fire more and ate more, but at half past five every morning without fail Edie would wake up a human so the door could be opened to let her out. Off she would go into the dark dawn exploring and later come back for breakfast. Mabel wasn’t one to follow routine in the same way; she would just wander as she pleased and follow her own method.
One day at lunch time it was just Mabel though. Edie didn’t come back from being outside. The humans thought she must have gone for a huge walk and got lost and they had no idea where she was. It wasn’t like her.
A day had passed and worry was growing. The humans asked around and eventually she was found by the side of the road. Edie had been hit by a car. She was buried in the garden with some sea shells and flowers. The next day Mabel was walking the same path over and over, meowing, like she was looking for her. She had lost her wee pal. She hadn’t made it to her second birthday yet. Everyone was heartbroken.
Just outside my window where I record there is a rhododendron bush. This is where Mabel likes to sit after she jumps outside. The bush isn’t in full bloom yet in this photograph, but is beginning to show the colours that I integrated into the artwork for this track.
Close up of the rhododendrons in full bloom. With its striking pink colouring and distinct smell the flowers attract bees. Anything small that moves catches Mabel’s attention due to her having a strong hunting instinct. She likes to sit under the flowers where she can easily chase the bees. This became her favourite place to sit for a while.
Portrait collage. This is a photograph of me taken by my partner, Susan Le May, at home during the Covid-19 lockdown which I then edited to tie in with the single artwork by including key elements such as the rhododendron bush and paint dots.
Mabel the cat, the subject of this instrumental. Forever curious, she approaches to investigate during a photoshoot that took place at home during the Coronavirus lockdown. She is rewarded with Felix Play Tubes.
The drums on this track were performed by Martin Johnston at his studio in Coatbridge. He had recently attended a recording workshop with legendary producer Steve Albini at Chem19 and used mic placement techniques that were new to me. He is frighteningly efficient in the studio and his performance on this track is un-edited.
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The last photo I have of Edie.
Edie with Mabel.
Edie's pawprint from when she jumped in through the window on a rainy day and landed on a piece of paper.
Some of the pedals used for these recordings.
More music is under construction.