If you’ve never heard the beautiful melodies of Cattle & Cane then you’re in for a real treat. Not only do we have an exciting and exclusive performance vid of the lovely “Tonight We Dance (Cleveland Hills)” (recorded by Jodie Canwell at The Nuthatch in Middlesbrough) but also an interview with Joe Hammill that illuminates the band’s process behind album number two.
You guys returned for another PledgeMusic campaign after ‘Home.’ What made you decide this was the right platform for another round?
We loved how involved our supporters could be with us last time, and we wanted that same involvement for this campaign. PledgeMusic allows us to interact in a way we’ve never done before. We even hand delivered some of the pre-orders last time which was lots of fun!
If you go over the campaign goal, what will that allow you to do musically?
The campaign has got off to a great start and we’re already at 98 percent! This has given us the confidence to make sure that we’re creating the best album that we possibly can. We’ve just commissioned a brilliant strings arranger to record some string parts for a couple of tracks, which we’re incredibly excited for everybody to hear.
It seemed like ‘Home’ presented you guys with some amazing opportunities, critical acclaim, commercial response and more. How surprised were you by the entire cycle of what ‘Home’ brought to the band?
We had no idea we would have the response that we did. Thanks to the pre-orders we gained through PledgeMusic, we ended up in the top 100 of the Official UK mid-week chart and finished the week in the top 30 of the independent chart, which was just fantastic. ‘Home’ gave us a great platform to go out and tour more and it was an amazing feeling hearing people sing the songs back at us in venues across the UK.
You’re working with Shameboy on this recording as producer. What made that connection and what are you most excited about when it comes to working with Luuk?
I met Luuk last year through our music publishers, who are based in Belgium. I get sent tracks from various producers who are looking for a ‘top-line’, and Luuk really liked the top-line i worked on for one of his tracks. So, one thing led to another and I went out to Belgium to work with him for a few days. We really got on and instantly formed a great working relationship. I showed him some demos of stuff I was working on for the new Cattle & Cane album, and he instantly said he wanted to work on the album, so that was that!
It’s exciting working with Luuk because he offers a lot in the studio. He has amazing ears — both aesthetically and technically — and understands arrangements so well. His knowledge of music is so impressive. He’s an artist in his own right with Shameboy and is very successful with it too. He’s a great drummer and understands that mythical term ‘groove’. He has great taste, and makes great suggestions to take the song to a better place. I’ve never had so much fun in the studio before as I’ve had with Luuk; he’s totally diligent when he is in the studio and unbelievably focused on producing a great sounding album.
You’re recording in Belgium and Malta. Is that a product of working with Luuk or is there more there?
Luuk has played a big part in it, he recommended ICP (Brussels), Studio 5 (Liege) and Temple Studios (Malta) to us and we were keen to make it happen because we really liked the idea of recording in different countries and ensuring that our full focus would be recording the album. The studios are all absolutely amazing too and the gear in them is second to none. To record in similar studios in the UK would have cost so much more!
You’re also working with MFC Foundation and Middlesbrough and Teesside Philanthropic Foundation. What makes those organizations important to you?
The support we get locally is incredible, so it means a lot to all of us to try and give something back in whatever way we can. These two organisations both do some amazing work for the community, which is really important to us.