Released: November 2010
Cat No: BIPH08CD
- Brian Wilson Karaoke
- There Are No Maps for This Part of the City
- The Truth
- Advocate’s Close
- Stamped Addressed Envelope
- All I Wanted Was to Be a Gangster
- Feeble Jesus
- All the Ways of This Love
- Fucking Manchester
For years now Andrew Eaton, singer with the Scottish band Swimmer One, has been writing music on the piano – delicate, melancholy songs inspired by writers as diverse as Mark Eitzel, Momus, Jane Siberry, and Steve Reich. A few of these – The Dark Ages, The Erskine Bridge, Drowning Nightmare 1, The Fakester Resurrection – evolved into songs for Swimmer One’s first two critically acclaimed albums but until recently most of them stayed in his head.
Then, while finishing their second album, Dead Orchestras, Swimmer One decided it was time to record some of this other music as well. Andrew played piano and sang. Laura Cameron Lewis sang too and co-wrote several songs. Hamish Brown produced it all.
The result is There Are No Maps For This Part Of The City, released under the name Seafieldroad on Biphonic Records. Recorded over several days on a borrowed Steinway in a flat above Edinburgh’s Royal Mile, and in a recording studio in Leith, the album features string arrangements by Pete Harvey, well known in Scotland for his work with bands such as Withered Hand and Meursault. Pete previously contributed string arrangements to the Swimmer One album Dead Orchestras.
Andrew’s music with Swimmer One has already featured in a Hollywood movie, award-winning short films, two international theatre performances, and radio shows by – amongst numerous others – Rob Da Bank, Mark Radcliffe, Steve Lamacq and Gideon Coe. There Are No Maps For This Part Of The City is a new and very different showcase for his songwriting talents. A second album, recorded during the same sessions, will follow in 2011.
Why Seafieldroad? Seafield Road, as any Edinburgh resident will tell you, is one of the least picturesque streets in Scotland’s famously beautiful capital city – a road generally associated with warehouses, prostitution and a sewage works. However, if you live in Leith (as two of Swimmer One do) and wish to go to the big, sandy beach at nearby Portobello, that is the road you need to take. It seemed like a good metaphor for the fact that the road to happiness isn’t always as postcard pretty as you’d like it to be. (More straightforwardly, the name consists of three types of geographical feature that sound good together.)
It’s the sort of record that they – the Eitzels and the McAloons – used to make … An adult pop record with heart and brains – The Guardian
‘Such a brilliant song and a lovely album. A late contender for one of the best of the year.’ – Gideon Coe, BBC 6 Music
‘A heart-breaking beauty of a debut LP’ – Drowned in Sound
‘Built around Eaton’s fragile, Nick Drake-esque tenor and the full-bodied chime of a Steinway piano – lapped at by waves of surging string arrangements from Pete Harvey – the songs glow with a sense of sincere, melancholic wonderment. An album to get lost in.’ – The List
‘Like minimalist classical composers working on adventurous ballads for REM. This album will either win the Mercury Prize or disappear into fervent cult obscurity; it’s so good that it deserves no compromise in between.’ – Sunday Herald