Cambridge based band Lizard Brain joined German Shepherd Records for their third album “Stray” . Released digitally on 18th January 2019 the 12 track collection finds the band delivering a heady cocktail of beautifully crafted and diverse songs
Lizard Brain are:
Richard Jones: songs, keys, bass, vox, arrangements, production
Mark Fleet: songs, keys, arrangements, production
David Carter: songs, guitars, vox, bass, flute, sax, arrangements, production
Tony Jenkins: songs, vox, guitars, arrangements
“Stray” was recorded in the purpose-built Lizard Lounge studio in Lode, Cambridge from late 2016 to late 2018. Album production was led by Richard and supported by Mark and David. Following on from their earlier albums Hold The Mind (2012) and That Has A Nice Ring To It (2016), the songs on the new collection emerged from a series of writing sessions using different combinations of band members whose wide musical influences resulted an album rich with variety.
The album kicks off with the Moroder drenched alt-disco groove of “Lost In Sound”, switches to the impassioned rock of “Gannets” and then swerves into Jamaican grooves with “Am I Just A Name Now”. In these three opening tracks the group evidence their skill and competence in delivering lyrically strong, well produced, quality material. What follows is a varied menu of twangy psych pop, driving rock, Northern Soul, elegiac balladry, and an epic anthemic closer “Freedom”. Throughout there are strong melodies and hooks that will leave you going back for repeated listens..
“I heard it for the first time this morning. Catchy and well produced. You guys never fail to impress.” Neil Whiteside, Cambridge 105 DJ on lead track “Lost In Sound”
“I’ve not sorted my top 20 albums for 2018 yet, but already have a contender for ‘19 following a private preview listen [to Stray]… Lizard Brain.” Dave Hammond, Cambridge 105 DJ
“I’m reminded of 10cc at their best, a truly impressive collection of songs” Aural Delights Blog
“Great songs.” Phil Crowder, The End of the Week Show Sheppey FM
Stray is available on Spotify, iTunes, Bandcamp and all major global outlets.
Previous Lizard Brain releases can be found at Bandcamp
Mark and Richard started working together as Lizard Brain in 2008. Richard had already been in various successful musical projects, including as founder member of Transoceanic, regularly topping charts and for some years the most successful UK-based artist on MP3.COM, at the time the most important global music web platform. You can find three Transoceanic albums on all major current music platforms – ambient electronica at its very best.
Mark was a fan of Transoceanic before realising Richard was the founder member. Mark hadn’t been in any bands before, but he was a passionate and knowledgeable consumer of a wide variety of musical styles, and quickly mastered powerful DAW and synth software and began to create highly original soundscapes. They began to consider releasing an album, later to be called Hold The Mind, in 2010. Tony joined midway through this period as a vocalist, guitarist and songwriter, and helped bring the first album to completion during 2012.
David, a talented multi-instrumentalist who spans classical and most pop styles, and teaches guitar, joined midway through the second album, That Has A Nice Ring To It. Richard and Dave had written and performed a live theatre soundtrack of alt-rock songs several years previously.
It was only on releasing this second album in 2016 that Lizard Brain began actively to promote their music, reaching out initially to Cambridge 105 DJ Dave Hammond, who introduced them to other DJs and became an active supporter and champion of the band. The hugely positive reaction Lizard Brain received from that point on, led to their investment in the Lizard Lounge studio late in 2016.
OF THE NEW ALBUM THE BAND SAY……
Richard: “Several times we thought that we were ready to master the album, but ‘Good Enough’ doesn’t cut it round here. So, nuances were changed, possibilities tried out and reference tracks compared to our mixes. It’s been so painstakingly mixed and mastered that we could give you a dozen different mixes of all the songs. But now I can really hear the difference. There’s nothing that I hear and think: “Ah – we missed that detail”. It’s as close to perfect as we could make it, and I love that. Worth every moment spent in the studio. It’s a very exciting achievement for us, no doubt about it.”
David: “Yeah, well the album really hangs together in a way I kind of expected, but was still surprised by, if that makes any sense. Four different writers, but all coming back to that central theme. What are we doing here? How are we supposed to be? With each other? With ourselves? Songs of hope, failure, reflection… escape even. Should I stay or should I go? How can I be happy? And what does it mean to be a human being? How do I work this thing? How did I get here? What do I do now? I had a joke, you know, that it was only musical differences keeping us together. You can pretty much hear that on the album, there’s a whole range of different styles. But it turns out deep down we are all pretty much the same. Who would have thought it? “
Mark: “Stray is what happens when you take a rocker, a hippy, an ambient geek and a mod, and you shake – vigorously.”
July 2019 saw the release of a remix of the track “Don’t Even Blink” which was originally on the bands’ “Hold The Mind” album.