Tag Archives: new releases

Derek Smalls

It’s a Smalls world after all: Spinal Tap bassist Derek goes solo

Derek Smalls, bassist with rock legends Spinal Tap since 1967, returns to action with a new solo album Smalls Change: Meditations on Aging due for release in April.

The album is being released through Pledge Music, who describe it as “a poignant and oftentimes furious contemplation on ageing that explores the passing of time and all things loud. With styles that cross the gamut of musical bases, the album possesses the edgy rawness and Rock God sensibility that was always shared by Derek and his fellow former band members Nigel Tufnel and David St Hubbins and is now all too evident in his solo work.” Smalls himself describes the album as “halfway between ‘rage against the dying of the light’ and trying to find the light.”

Financed by a grant from the recently launched British Fund for Ageing Rockers, Smalls Change will be Smalls’ first new release since Spinal Tap reunited in 2009 for their comeback album Back From The Dead. The album features a plethora of special guests including members of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Steely Dan, Foo Fighters and Styx, as well as Peter Frampton, Rick Wakeman, David Crosby and Dweezil Zappa. Smalls also plans to tour in support of the album; the Lukewarm Water Live: An Adventure in Loud Music tour kicks off in New Orleans on 14 April, with more dates to be announced.

Smalls Change is now available to pre-order on Pledge Music, with bundles ranging from a $10 digital download to a $60 signed vinyl LP. Other bizarre merchandise bundles include a “leather” bag of Smalls’ used pipe cleaners, a Shrewsbury FC shirt signed by Derek himself, and a copy of a letter from Smalls’ ex-wife’s attorney. The album’s full track listing is:

1. Openture – Derek with The Hungarian Studio Orchestra
Smalls: “The philosophy of this record, expressed in fewer words than I’ve taken to almost describe it.”

2. Rock ‘n’ Roll Transplant – Derek with Steve Lukather (guitar, Toto), drum legends Jim Keltner (George Harrison) and Chad Smith (Red Hot Chili Peppers)
“Whatever might be ailing you, rock ’n’ roll is the cure. Ask Dr. Derek!”

3. Butt Call – Derek with Phil X (guitar, Bon Jovi) and Taylor Hawkins (drums, Foo Fighters)
“In one lifetime, the telephone has gone from a miracle to a pain in the arse.”

4. Smalls Change – Derek with The Hungarian Studio Orchestra, Judith Owen (vocals) Danny Kortchmar (guitar, Don Henley) and Russ Kunkel (drums, James Taylor)
“Why Lukewarm Water is no longer bracketed by Fire and Ice. A nod to what’s past, and a wink to what’s next.”

5. Memo To Willie – Derek with Donald Fagen (vocals), Jeff “Skunk” Baxter and Larry Carlton (guitars, Steely Dan), and The Snarky Puppy Horns
“An urgent missive to the Honourable Member: continued tumescence, if you please.”

6. It Don’t Get Old – Derek with Peter Frampton (guitar, vocals) and Waddy Wachtel (guitar, Keith Richards).
“Life on the road, an endless series of pointless encounters. What could be better?”

7. Complete Faith – Derek with The Hungarian Studio Orchestra
“A musical interruption.”

8. Faith No More – Derek with The Hungarian Studio Orchestra and Todd Sucherman (drums, Styx)
“As I get older, I look back more fondly on all the people I’ve known. Except for Ian.”

9. Gimme Some (More) Money – Derek with Paul Shaffer (piano and organ), Waddy Wachtel (guitar) and David Crosby (vocals)
“Time and technology change everything, except the need for change.”

10. MRI – Derek with Dweezil Zappa (guitars)
“Everybody’s going to have one, eventually. It’s just another ride. To hell, but still…”

11. Hell Toupée – Derek with The Hungarian Studio Orchestra
“Think Satan doesn’t have dark thoughts about his appearance as he ages? Think again.”

12. Gummin’ the Gash – Derek with Steve Vai (guitar), Gregg Bisonnette (drums, Ringo Starr) and Jane Lynch (vocals)
“Losing your teeth closes one door, and opens another. A celebration of the meeting of two toothless cavities.”

13. She Puts the Bitch in Obituary – Derek with Richard Thompson (guitar) and Jane Lynch (vocals)
“A hymn to womanhood in all her splendor.”

14. When Men Did Rock – Derek with Michael League (bass), Joe Satriani (guitar), Rick Wakeman (keyboards) and The Hungarian Studio Orchestra

Chart Watch and New Releases: 4 August 2017

Pet Shop Boys remasters

When did the Pet Shop Boys last have three albums in the chart at once? Probably not since 1987, when Actually joined Please and remix album Disco in the listings. This week they’ve done it again with new entries for … read more

Chart Watch and New Releases: 30 June 2017

"ABBA Gold" 2017 gold vinyl edition

As always at this time of year, Glastonbury propels a number of “heritage acts” back into the album chart, not least the Bee Gees whose contradictorily titled Timeless – The All-Time Greatest Hits enters at #9 following Barry Gibb’s performance … read more

Chart Watch and New Releases: 23 June 2017

The Smiths "The Queen Is Dead" 2017 single release

An unexpected return to the Official Singles Chart for The Smiths this week as a limited 7″ and 12″ release of the title track from their 1986 album The Queen is Dead reaches #85 – inevitably, it’s also #1 on … read more

Chart Watch and New Releases: 9 June 2017

Roger Waters - Is This The Life We Really Want?

Beautifully timed for the week of the General Election, Is This The Life We Really Want? enters the album chart at number 3 for Roger Waters, his highest ever solo placing and his first top ten album since Amused To … read more

Chart Watch and New Releases: 2 June 2017

The Joshua Tree 30th anniversary

It’s still not an ’80s record but we’re claiming it anyway: the seminal Beatles album Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band celebrates the thirtieth anniversary of its twentieth anniversary in 1987 by returning to number 1 in the album chart, … read more

Chart Watch and New Releases: 26 May 2017

Kraftwerk: 3-D - The Catalogue

Erasure enter the album chart at number 6 with World Be Gone, their thirteenth top twenty album and their highest placing since I Say I Say I Say brought their run of five consecutive number one albums to a close … read more

Chart Watch and New Releases: 19 May 2017

Iron Maiden "Fear of the Dark" 2017 vinyl

A mere two months after reaching the top fifty with his Jawbone soundtrack, Paul Weller scores his seventeenth solo top ten album with A Kind Revolution which débuts at #5 today. Blondie’s Pollinator drops from 4 to 19 and Nick … read more