Cold Specks release their debut single ‘Holland' through paradYse Records, the new Transgressive imprint, on 17th October.
Recorded at Monnow Valley Studios and mixed at Sub Bubble, the single features tracks ‘Holland' and ‘Old Stepstone' and will be available on 7" and as a download. Cold Specks have announced a single launch show at St Pancras Old Church on day of release - tickets will be on sale Friday 2nd September. The band, who will appear at Jimmy's Farm Festival on 11th September, have been confirmed as main support to Howling Bells on their UK tour next month.
Sun 11th Ipswich Jimmy's Farm Festival
Weds 14th Portsmouth Wedgewood Rooms *
Thurs 15th London Electric Ballroom *
Fri 16th Sheffield The Plug *
Sun 18th Leeds Cockpit *
Mon 19th Glasgow Oran Mor *
Tues 20th Manchester Academy 3 *
Mon 17th London St Pancras Old Church
* supporting Howling Bells
Cold Specks is 23-year-old Al Spx from Etobicoke, Canada, who now lives in London. Describing her sound as ‘Doom Soul', Cold Specks' music is steeped in the musical traditions of the Deep South. No wonder then that Al cites the Lomax Field Recordings and James Carr as influences along with Bill Callahan and Tom Waits. With a voice that evokes the ‘spirit feel' of Mahalia Jackson and the visceral tones of Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Cold Specks' sparse arrangements and chaingang rhythms stop you dead in your tracks.
"My little brother, who was spending his summers with our mother in Toronto, had always told me of this girl he was friends with that had this amazing voice," recalls Cold Specks' manager, Jim Anderson. "As a producer I'd heard that so often that I didn't take too much notice. Then I came in one night to find him and a few friends drinking in the flat and playing a CD of her demos. I was completely transfixed and just kept pressing repeat. I knew I had to work with her. I eventually persuaded her to come over. At that point she had never played with another musician and was completely self-taught with her own unique tuning and timings, which we had to decipher."
"Jim convinced me to fly out and work on the record for a few months," explains Al Spx. "That was a year and a half ago. I guess I'm permanently based here now. I didn't know anyone when I moved here. We needed musicians and Jim knew a bunch. Producer Rob Ellis (PJ Harvey, Anna Calvi) has been helping out with some arrangements and percussion and Jim's old friends Pete Roberts (guitar), Thomas Greene (piano) and Tom Havelock (cello) also play on the record. It's almost finished. We're off to Monnow Valley this month to complete it."