My Dear Killer: Archivism.
Clinical Shyness "Advanced Demo Edition" MK. I & MKI/a
Support: Tape (I), CDr (I/a).
Playlist: A May Afternoon, Clinical Shyness, The Wish Talker, What Took You So Long, What I Should Have Done (words), To Apologise.
Clinical Shyness "Advanced Demo Edition" MK. II
Support: CDr.
Playlist: A May Afternoon, Clinical Shyness, The Wish Talker, Phone Calls The Winter Bride, (I Fear) Time, What Took You So Long, What I Should Have Done (words), Facing the Storm, To Apologise.
Clinical Shyness "Advanced Demo Edition" MK. III; MK. III/a & MK. III/ab
Support: CDr.
Playlist: A May Afternoon, Clinical Shyness, The Wish Talker, One Day or Another, Facing the Storm, The Winter Bride, Phone Calls, (I Fear) Time, What Took You So Long, The Scent of the Water, What I Should Have Done (words), To Apologise.
Technical Notes:
Recorded in July 2001 by Stefano S. and Lorenzo T. The recording set-up is described in details in the Experimental Procedure section of the booklet of Clinical Shyness. In brief, all the sounds were collected by a combination of dynamic microphones, directed into an analogue 16-channel mixing console, the output of which fed a Tascam 80-8 reel-to-reel recorder. Due to the failure or channel #7, the recorder was effectively operated as a 7 track. Also copious spillover of sound tracks recorded on channel #6 and number #8 could be heard in nearby channels, # 4, #5 and #8. The songs were mixed using the same mixing console, the output of which were connected to a Hi-Fi amplifier, linked simultaneously to a tape deck and a PC audio soundcard. Version MK I, refers to the mix recorded on tape, and copied from the it; version MK Ia refers to the mix recorded digitally, and distributed on CDr.The most notable differences are a less noisy version of Clinical shyness (track #02) and the presence of both the voice and the drum-machine, as well as cymbals on To apologise (track #06).
Miscellaneous Notes:
Clinical Shyness was originally commissioned as a short EP to be released either as a 7" or a 10", by the local Italian label ee:lettro. The record was substantially completed in less than 15 days, with all the main guitar tracks and voice lines recorded in a single afternoon. We did take our time to play with the overdubs, moreover as we never operated a reel-to-reel before and we went a little bit punch-in happy. Nevertheless, by the end of August 2001 the record was ready. However, the label suddenly folded in early 2002, and the 10" project collapsed with it.
The demo had an ultramarine blue Bristol-type cardboard cover, with the picture of the little lady playing on the swing. I believe the shot was taken in Belfast, but cannot credit the author as I cut it from a newspaper magazine a few years ago. The internal leaflet was a simple photocopy including a description of the tracks and a few information about the band previous releases.
Technical Notes:
Recorded in April 2002 (Easter) by Stefano S. and Lorenzo T. The recording set-up is substantially the same as that used in the MK I version, and is described in the Experimental Procedure section of Clinical Shyness booklet. However on top of the definitive failure of channel #7, the recorder channel #1 started to behave funnily too, and was fundamentally unreliable. In order to overcome the problem, so overdubs were recorded digitally, premixing the multi-track recording, and successively recording the additional layer using a PC. We recorded a few extra songs. However, excluding (I fear) Time and Phone Calls, none of the them appears on the definitive version of Clinical Shyness. Some have been put together in a collection entitled The Easter EP, and a couple of them feature in compilations. To apologise is still is rather minimalist, even though a combination of drum-machine, "real" drums (cymblas), and even a vocal lines are present in this version. These have all been scrapped in the final release.
Miscellaneous Notes:
This firstly extended version of Clinical Shyness was a result of the suggestion of the American label Turn Records which expressed interested in the original EP version, but was keen to release an LP. In the meanwhile we moved to the UK in December 2001, and due to the relative bulkiness of the reel-to-reel recorded, it was impossible to take it with us. This limited the possibility of recording to sporadic visit to Italy, hence the Easter EP. The additional tracks were recorded in two one-day session, in the first we recorded Phone Calls, (I Fear) Time, One day or Another, and Facing the Storm with the help of Lorenzo; in the second The Winter Bride and the additional drums on To apologise in Giulio's bedroom. The idea stemmed from a brief ans rather succesful tour of the UK, when we played with Giulio at drums, replacing Candies who withdrew at the last minute. We also recorded a chicken featuring in One day or another. After that we were banned from the house. However, the chicken(?)/hen(?) contribution has been removed from The Easter EP, as well: a worthless effort. The new songs sounded terrible as they were recorded with relative lack of care and in terrible rush; particularly the guitars. I was incredibly tempted to saw the fender Jaguar in several little pieces: it has got the worst designed bridge ever seen; the Jolana has a much better, and that says it all. Of course, there was more work needed on it. The kiss of death to the MK II version was a completely fucked-up mastering, for which MDK is the only responsible. The demo looked substantially identical to the MK I & Ia version, but came with a different (photocopied) leaflet.
Technical Notes:
Recorded in Summer 2002 by Stefano S. and Marco G. We were now left with a barely functional reel-to-reel and a two mastering tapes containing the original recordings. Marco agreed to help to clean up, and fundamentally put an end to the recording sessions. The Tascam 80-8 was moved to Milan, and we used the rest of gear he had in his bedroom, which was previously used to record the Fog in the Shell. Luckily, Marco's dad is a collector of vintage microphones, so we had the chance to experiment with some very funny ones. We also had to overdub digitally, but using a substantially improved sound-card and recording software. We recorded new version of (I Fear) Time, One day or Another, a new track, The scent of the water and massively stratified guitars on To Apologise. Mixing and mastering of all the original recordings was also performed with great care. The MKIII demo edition constitutes the basis for the final version of Clinical Shyness. To apologise has now lost the drums and the voice, is in its almost definitive instrumental form, although still differs from the final release in many ways.
Miscellaneous Notes:
Turn Records was still interested in releasing an extended version of Clinical Shyness. The MKIII version is in absolute the most expanded advance demo, and is nearly double in length compared to the original MK I edition. Nevertheless, we still felt a substantial lack of homogeneity. The ability to overdub songs digitally also led us to record a vast number of overlaid guitars and vocals track, which were often superfluous. Thus One day or Another, The winter bride were cancelled from the MKIIIa edition. The MKIIIa/b is identical to the MKIIIa, but Marco added ambient samples on Facing the storm. This was inspired by the Fong Manifesto. The demo had a Prussian (darker shade) blue Bristol-type cardboard cover, with picture of the little lady playing on the swing, on an ultramarine blue background. It contained a two-pages leaflet, featuring L.B. story which is the central folder of the final version of the record.


Clinical Shyness "Advanced Demo Edition" MK. IV
Support: CDr.
Playlist: A May Afternoon, Clinical Shyness, The Wish Talker, Phone Calls, (I Fear) Time, What Took You So Long, The Rules Behind, Just, What I Should Have Done (words), Smokers, To Apologise.

Clinical Shyness "Advanced Demo Edition" MK. V
Support: CDr.
Playlist: A May Afternoon, Clinical Shyness, The Wish Talker, Phone Calls, (I Fear) Time, What Took You So Long, The Rules Behind, Just.

Clinical Shyness "Advanced Demo Edition" MK. VI
Support: CDr & CD.
Playlist: A May Afternoon, Clinical Shyness, The Wish Talker, Phone Calls, (I Fear) Time, Words, To Apologise.
Technical Notes:
Recorded in the winter of 2004 by Stefano S. The MKIV advanced demo version, contains, generally simplified, remix of song previously appeared on the MKII version. Moreover, there are two more original songs, The Rules Behind and Just, which were recorded at 67th the Burroughs in London, U.K. These two songs were recorded using a Tascam 424mkII Portastudio 4-track tape recorder, using two conventional dynamic microphones to collect the output of a Fender Vibrosonic Reverb amplifier. The guitar was the habitual Jolana Proxima II and was filter by home-built replicas of MXR Distortion + and Electro Harmonix Big Muff. An analogue delay unit (Ibanez, mod. AD 100), was also employed during in these recordings. These two songs were initially mixed using Myriam and Olivier's PC, in their flat in Archway, London. Subsequently transfer to a two-track reel-to-reel recorder, Ampex mod. 901 for final equalisation. The out-put from the Ampex tape recorded was successively digitised for release in CDr format. A couple of back-up copies on tape cassette were also produced.
Miscellaneous notes:
By now it was clear that Turn Records would have not released the Clinical Shyness. At the end of 2003, two years after its original recording, the record had to be considered as complete failure. Nevertheless we tried to give it a fresh start. The MKIV version is substantially slimmer than the MKIII, and substantially went back to the original idea (the MKI), with the addition of Phone Calls and (I fear) Time and two newly recorded songs, previously released in the Teacup Session, and Smokers previously appeard, in identical form on the Ouzel 2004 compilation. Moreover, the remixing involved a lot of scissoring, of the large amount of stratified tracks, recorded with Marco one year and a half before. Most of the mixes are essentially identical to those appearing in the final version of the record, excluding, A May Afternoon, Clinical Shyness and The Wish Talker which will be further modified. The demo had the same cover as the MKIII version, with a modified two pages leaflet. I believe there are at between 100 to 150 copies of this demo in circulation, mostly in the hands (or bins) of record label artistic directors. Well, as you did not even bother answering, hand them FUCKING back, buggers!
Technical Notes:
Recorded in the November and December of 2005 by Stefano S. and Niki E. at 67th the Burroughs using a Tascam 424mkII Portastudio 4-tracks cassette tape recorder. The sounds were collected using two conventional dynamic microphones (Shure mod. 58, and AKG C-24-162-1), and two condenser microphones (ADK mods. 51 SC-1/A-51). The principal sound sources were a Fender Vibrosonic Reverb amplifier, the voice and an acoustic amplified guitar (Washburn D10CEMPwr) which were recorded at the same time. The MKV advance demo was mixed down directly from the multi-track to a two-track 1/4" reel-to-reel recorder (Ampex mod. 601) and simultaneously equalised using a Hi-Fi pre-amplifier. The output from the Ampex tape recorded was successively digitised for release in CDr/CD format.
Miscellaneous notes:
The MKV advanced demo version, is the only entirely brand new edition, and contains acoustic version of the songs. Essentially it has been an attempt to start completely anew to finally overcome the inherent problems relating to songs recorded a significant time before, and with various and miscellaneous set-ups and attitudes. A going back to initial homogeneity. The MKV version is incredibly short and is uncompleted, due to the substantial death of the majority of the components of the multi-track recorder. Thus, overdubs are rare. And there are no punch-in(s). We even try to resurrect the session when Niki almost got an identical recorder on loan from a ex-member of the Flying Pickets. It turned out he never actually owned it, or he got rid of it ages before. Nevermind. The demo has a golden wrapping paper cover, with the photograph of the young lady on the swing on a black background printed on semi-transparent acetate. More recently it came simply with a black Bristol-type cardboard cover only. No leaflets. Definitely less than 20 copies around: a rarity. (I do not even have the original any more, for the record).
Technical Notes:
Additional recording were added in the August 2005 by Stefano S. and Mauro M. at Buenaventura & December-January of 2005 by Stefano S. and Niki E. at 67th the Burroughs. At Buenaventura, the original tracks used in the MK I version were digitalised using a Echo (mod. Leyla) analogue-to-digital converter. Additional keyboards were added to Clinical Shyness, By Mauro M. e Luca S. The sounds were collected using two condenser microphones (ADK mods. 51 SC-1/A-51 and an AKG C1000S) and fed into a Yamaha mod.12/6 mixer and then directed into the Leyla soundcard, plugged into a PC. At the Burroughs, additional guitars were recorded on Clinical Shyness using a Fender Vibrosonic Reverb amplifier, and Jolana Proxima II guitar, as well as a Gibson (mod. SG) guitar, using a TEAC Tascam 424 mkIII multitrack on which the songs were previously premixed. The MKVI version was finally carefully remixed digitally, transferred to the Ampex 601 and simultaneously equalised and compressed using a modified module of Hi-Fi pre-amplifier, and a home built multi-band compressor and a parametric equaliser. The out-put from the Ampex tape recorded was successively digitised using an Edirol UA-3FX soundcard, operating at a bandwidth of 48KHz and a resolution of 24 bits.
Miscellaneous notes:
The MKVI advanced demo version is the Clinical Shyness record. The additional recording stated in the Summer of 2005 after Boring Machine and Eaten by Squirrels agreed to release the record in Italy on a string budget, which was all it was needed. Mauro helped in converting the original analogue tracks into digital form, allowing for digital mixing and an implementation and arrangement of the raw material. This advanced draft of the record was finally completed back in London, with additional guitars recorded on Clinical Shyness, novel lyrics on The Wish Talker and sampling on both Clinical Shyness and To Apologise. The record was also meticulously mastered using a mixed digital-analogue procedure. The rest is essentially the same as the MKIV version. The graphics consists of an ultramarine Bristol-type cardboard on the background a Nautilus shell. The leaflet is identical to the booklet of the record. For friends only.