You read correctly! With much anticipation/excitement/apprehension I’m happy to say that my new album entitled “Nambucca Fables” has been recorded and mixed. It’s certainly been a long time between drinks, my last update may have been as far back as mid last year. We’ve been busy though – chipping away at these songs in the studio, (and from home) through Covid and lockdowns. I’ve been lucky enough to work with my usual band along with Tim Kevin (Holly Throsby, The Apartments, Youth Group) at the helm for most of the mixing/engineering duties.
Nambucca Fables is a very personal collection of songs for me, for a myriad of reasons, and I’m hoping to release this album on LTD ED Deluxe Gatefold vinyl and on CD. To accomplish that I’ll really need your help. I’ve spent my every last red cent on the album so far, financing the recording, mixing and mastering. Artwork is still upcoming. I won’t tell you too much of the backstory here though…..as you can read all about the turbulent creation of this new batch of songs at our Pozible HQCrowdfunding Campaign. There’s also a link at the top of the campaign page to a mini documentary on the making of Nambucca Fables. The campaign will begin on Monday October 10th and will run until Monday November 7th.
If you head to Poziblethere are loads of tasty rewards and pre-orders for your perusal. Thank you in advance for any support you can give this new, special project. Your help in getting this album off the ground will be greatly appreciated.
A lot has happened in the world since I last posted – and I’m struggling, like the rest of you to take it all in. Currently we’re into our 12th week of lockdown here in NSW, Australia. Remaining creative isn’t always easy, and I’ll admit I’ve been struggling to write. Lyrics aren’t coming as naturally as they used to. Melodies appear and fade. Chord progressions are softly strummed and promptly forgotten. Yet, despite the involunatry brain slump I’ve managed to start work on a new album, summoned up some new motivation and slowly (slowly slowly) something fresh is falling into place.
Here’s an update on a few happenings from the past year.
Last May I took my usual comrades into the studio for a few days and we started work on a brand new album. We managed to get four songs in before COVID restrictions brought everything to a crashing halt. We are working with engineer Tim Kevin (Holly Throsby, Youth Group, The Apartments) out at Tempe River Studios. We’re managing to continue working remotely for the time being. Here’s a bunch of happy snaps.
In other news, my bandmates, Jamie Hutchings, Reuben Wills and Scott Hutchings also make 3/4’s of Sydney noisemakers Infinity Broke. They have just released a new album Your Dream My Jail which is currently available on vinyl and CD and you can grab a copy HERE
I also created the clip for their first single Death Of A Tourist which premiered at Rolling Stone Australia. Who had this to say: “With the song released earlier this month, it’s now been accompanied by a Mark Moldre-directed video, featuring the group performing the track in an industrial environment, armed with masks and the same sort of devil-may-care attitude that helps to turn a track like “Death of A Tourist” into a powerful, lingering piece of musical expression.”
I’ve been listening to loads of music and doing some reading while in lockdown, here’s the shortlist:
Books Klara and The Sun : Kazuo Ishiguro The Unconsoled : Kazuo Ishiguro How To Write One Song : Jeff Tweedy Wandering : Hermann Hesse Room To Dream : David Lynch and Kristine McKenna Emily Dickinson : My Life Had Stood A Loaded Gun Tom T. Hall : The Songwriters Handbook Edited By Yasmine Gooneratne : Poems From India, Sri Lanka, Malaysia & Singapore Sylvie Simmons: I’m Your Man The Life Of Leonard Cohen
Hey Folks Here’s something new for you A brand new clip that we’ve put together for the song Keep On Moving from Fever Dreams the clip features footage from the archives of the band on tour through France (loads of footage during our shows for the Binic Folks Blues Festival) including Le Galion (Lorient) and Saint-Quay Portrieux train travel, driving and wandering the streets of Paris plus appearances in Australia at Lizottes, The Excelsior, The Vanguard, The Green Room, Dashville Festival, Sly Fox, The Factory, ABC Radio, The Hopetoun, The Glass Onion Society, Red Pepper Cafe, 2SERFM, camping on the South Coast of NSW, National Folk Festival, rehearsing, recording, Love Hz plus a few homely bits n pieces all put to a rollicking rowdy soundtrack thanks to all these people Jamie Hutchings, Scott Hutchings, Reuben Wills, Adam Lang Tim Byron, Ludovic Lorre, Jared Harrison, Michael Carpenter, Marie Caillou, Gilou Le Gruiec, Jeanclaude Massart, Chris Colquhoun, Chris Familton and Ben Jones
On another note I’ve finally started writing the follow up to Fever Dreams hopefully you’ll be hearing some new music from me in 2021
Hi there fine folk, I hope this ramble finds you well during the current chaos. I just wanted to let you know about a new release (of sorts) that will be uploaded for the masses in cyberspace today. Just in time for Bandcamp Day I’ll be releasing ‘Fits And Starts’, a small collection of odds and sods from the past 15 years of my musical history. 7 songs that have previously only been available on compilations, as bonus tracks or have remained unreleased will now be available in a single collection. Fits And Starts features production work by a series of old friends and confidantes including Tim Powles (The Church), Jamie Hutchings (Bluebottle Kiss/Infinity Broke), Michael Carpenter and Shane Pex.
The cover art features a photo taken while touring in France at a great pub called Le Galion (Lorient).
You’ll only be able to find this collection on Bandcamp – and you can pay whatever you like for it – in fact you can download all the tracks for free if you wish. My gift to you, folks. Bandcamp Day will begin at 5pm (Oz time) on Friday 7th August and finish at 5pm Saturday 8th August.
Bandcamp will continue its special “Bandcamp Friday” series for the rest of the year, waiving its revenue share on all sales on the first Friday of every month to give musicians more money from each purchase. The series started as a one-off at the end of March to help get extra money to artists after the COVID-19 pandemic brought touring to a halt and forced independent record stores to close. After fans spent $4.3 million on music and merch, the platform decided to waive its revenue share on the first Friday of the next three months. In a statement on its website, Bandcamp said, “Because the pandemic is far from over, we’ll continue to hold Bandcamp Fridays on the first Friday of every month until the end of the year.” The next five will take place August 7th, September 4th, October 2nd, November 6th and December 4th.
In case you missed the last film clip from Fever Dreams, heres the latest news – big thanks to 4ZZZ, 3RRR, 2serFM, FBi, AMNplify and community radio for showing your support. White Lightning was also featured on a series of Spotify playlists and recently received a mention on one of my favourite websites AmericanaUK:
“Here is a delightfully creative, homemade video, featuring cut-out text and images combined with performance footage. It’s the fourth single from Mark Moldre’s acclaimed 2019 album, ‘Fever Dreams’, celebrating a year since it’s release. ‘White Lightning’ reached the semi-finals of the Americana category in the International Songwriting Competition. It’s a spare, acoustic ballad, showing Moldre’s traditional influences. This is one of the best songs from a well-received album. Check it out.”
Finally – I’ve updated my website to include my Tour Diary, detailing my trip to Binic France, back in 2018. You can check it out here.
Look after yourselves and stay safe. I hope you enjoy the music.
‘White Lightning‘ is a raised-glass country sway, an intoxicating tale of love lost and found – with soft shuffling drums, woozy electric guitar and a loose and heady, end-of-the-night vibe.
‘White Lightning’ was a semi-finalist in the Americana category of the International Songwriting Competition (along with ‘How Long?’) from Fever Dreams. The competition is held annually with an esteemed panel of judges that include Tom Waits, Fleet Foxes, Tanya Tucker, Lonnie Liston Smith, Lukas Nelson, Irma Thomas, John Mayall, DJ Shadow and many more.
“‘White Lightning’ was inspired by an article that I read online about returned soldiers, drug addiction and the difficulties in returning home to everyday life while dealing with PTSD. The wives of these men were interviewed and they recalled in detail the hardships that they’d been forced to overcome. One in particular mentioned that her husband had tried to talk her into joining him in his addiction and she had almost followed him down the path of his final overdose. The catalyst for putting pen to paper originally was his story. ‘White Lightning’ was apparently an old slang term for LSD… and once I wrote it into the chorus it stuck.”
The homemade, Wes Anderson-influenced video highlights Moldre’s visual creativity and noir aesthetic which combines footage of Moldre performing, with cut-out text and images – the perfect accompaniment to the impressionistic grit and grain of the song.
“‘White Lightning’ is sparse and seductive, in its own beautifully lackadaisical way.” – Redback Rock
“‘White Lightning’ is a riotous sing-along” –Lonesome Highway (Ireland)
“Our favorite song on this album, however, is the beautifully sung acoustic Americana ballad ‘White Lightning’, a catchy song that continues to fascinate and intrigue from start to finish” – Rootstime Belgium
White Lightning was premiered at Rhythms Magazine on the 29th June 2020 HERE
Time marches on and the month of June marks the first year anniversary of Fever Dreams. You’ll find celebratory prices on all Fever Dreams related merch at my BANDCAMP store for the entire month.
PS Believe it or not my first solo album The Waiting Room also turned 10 this year.
Australian Lockdown ISO Covers
During these difficult times and the Stage 3 lockdown in Australia I’ve been recording a few off the cuff, warts and all, hushed, one-take video cover versions on my phone. Songs by some of the artists that have inspired me the most over the years – so far you’ll find covers of songs by Jeff Tweedy, Neil Young, Howe Gelb, Tom Waits, Ron Sexsmith, Elliot Smith, McCartney and more. I’ve just thrown a few of them up on YouTube – though you’ll find the bulk of them on IGTV @markmoldre and Facebook. Below is a version of Ron Sexsmith’s “Pretty Little Cemetery” – which even prompted an unsolicited comment from Ron himself, (“Wow, beautiful job!”) it’s the small things that make all this music malarkey worthwhile.
My son also joined me for a song – Chet doesn’t play guitar – except an obligatory Smoke On The Water (“…with the distortion on Dad!”) but on this occasion I put the guitar in an open tuning for him and gave him a crash course in soundscapes – Jazzmaster/whammy/loud feedback/reverb/delay. We made a racket for a one take, warts n all version of Laminated Cat by Jeff Tweedy’s Loose Fur.
I hope this small update finds you all well and coping with the pandemic and crisis that we’re all currently learning to deal with. From my semi closed doors to yours I send much love Mark X
Mark Moldre has today released the fourth video clip from his acclaimed 2019 album Fever Dreams. ‘How Long?’ incorporates a junk-shop percussion vibe, jazz licks, noir-twang and Moldre’s surreal wordplay and infectious melodicism as he tells a tale of comeuppance.
The clip also features Moldre’s main guitar – his custom made Daddy Mojo, aptly named Rosetta. In fact, it’s custom made by the very same artist – Lenny Piroth-Robert who painted the cover art for Fever Dreams (a man of many talents). Also featured is Mark’s handwired Swart AST Pro – check out these beautiful amps made by Michael Swart HERE.
International Songwriting Comp
Coinciding with the release of ‘How Long?’, Mark is chuffed to announce that he has been selected as a semi-finalist in the Americana category of the International Songwriting Competition – for not one, but two songs (‘How Long?’ and ‘White Lightning‘) from Fever Dreams. The competition is held annually with an esteemed panel of judges that include Tom Waits, Fleet Foxes, Tanya Tucker, Lonnie Liston Smith, Lukas Nelson, Irma Thomas, John Mayall, DJ Shadow and many more.
National Folk Festival
April will see Mark returning, for three appearances with his full band line up, at the 2020 National Folk Festival, held at Exhibition Park in Canberra ACT over the Easter long weekend of 9-13th of April.
Friday April 10 21:00 to 21:50 Majestic Stage
Saturday April 11 17:10 to 18:00 Scrumpy
Sunday April 12 14:50 to 15:40 Borderland
Finally – grab a free tote bag – personally designed and screen printed by Mark – with every vinyl purchase of Fever Dreams on his Bandcamp STORE
Coinciding with the upcoming single release of ‘How Long?’, Mark is proud to announce that he has been selected as a semi-finalist in the Americana category of the International Songwriting Competition – for not one, but two songs (‘How Long?’ and ‘White Lightning’) from Fever Dreams. The competition is held annually with an esteemed panel of judges that include Tom Waits, Fleet Foxes, Tanya Tucker, Lonnie Liston Smith, Lukas Nelson, Irma Thomas, John Mayall, DJ Shadow and many more.
Well here we are in 2020 and for the past few months Australia has been suffering truly damaging and widespread fires. For first month of 2020 all sales from my Bandcamp Store will be donated to the NSW Rural Fire Service. To make things a little more interesting I’ve included something new. I wrote the song ‘Notre Dame’ specifically for a pledger during my crowdfunding campaign last year. You can read the story of the song and have a listen or purchase HERE It’s a very personal song – big thanks to the sweet pledger who agreed for it to be made available to the public to raise money for the RFS. Thanks to those of you who have already jumped onboard.
First Gig For 2020
Due to circumstances way beyond my control, followed by a personal family tragedy, I was forced to cancel my tour with Jamie Hutchings last year. So to make up for things, just a little, we are going to play a one off show at the Petersham Bowling Club on Sunday Feb 9th. It’s an early show, 6-9pm and we’ll be joined by Simone East who will open the proceedings. Only 50 seats available so jump in early.
I’m super chuffed to announce that we’ll be returning to the National Folk Festival across the 9th-13th April 2020. All the fellas are coming with me – the full band in tow. The last time we played the festival was back in 2015. We’re looking forward to heading back….exact show times coming soon.
FREE SHIPPING ON FEVER DREAMS
Also, for the month of December I’ll be offering free shipping Australia wide for Fever Dreams on vinyl and CD on my Bandcamp page. For any overseas purchases $10AU shipping for vinyl and $2AU for CD’s.
HANDMADE CD BOX SET
Over the past 12 months I’ve sold about 5 of these complete box sets (see below) of my CD back catalogue. I’ve finally decided to make them available on Bandcamp.
The boxes are designed and created by me. All the cutting, pasting and varnishing I’m doing myself. I’ll sign them and add a personal message as well. No two boxes will be alike. Due to the fact that my CD stock is shrinking I can do 3 more that will contain 11 CD’s – after that a couple of the LTD Edition CD releases will be all gone and I’ll offer a slimmed down version.
They contain 3 CD’s from my early 2000’s project Hitchcock’s Regret, 2 CD’s from my side project with Michael Carpenter, The Supahip, plus 6 of my solo releases including a rare EP which contains a co-write with The Church drummer Timothy Powles. Albums produced by Jamie Hutchings, Tim Powles and Michael Carpenter. My musical history from about 2000 onwards.
You can even choose which era of album art you’d like on your box if you’d like to make an order – simply email email@example.com.
Here’s a link if you’d like to grab one on Bandcamp: CD BOX SET
Finally a couple more reviews for Fever Dreams have filtered through – including this one from Belgium.
Here’s a translated version courtesy of Google:
“The Waiting Room” was the title of the first solo album of Australian folk rocker Mark Moldre from Sydney in 2010. Three years later a second album followed which was entitled “An Ear To The Earth” and was again filled with solid rock songs. His backing band for recording that album consisted of drummer Scott Hutchings, bass player Reuben Wills, lap slid guitar player and banjo player Adam Lang and guitar player Jamie Hutchings.
It is with the same musicians that Mark Moldre now returned to the studio to record his third solo album “Fever Dreams“. The extra guest musicians who were invited to play on a few songs are pianist Jadey O’Regan, Hammond organ player Tim Byron and tenor saxophonist Lee Hutchings. The brand new album contains ten new songs that Mark Moldre himself has composed in recent years.
Don’t expect simple, obvious songs on “Fever Dreams“, but rather skillfully put together melodic and sometimes some mysterious pop and rock songs as presented here in the tracks “Josephine“, “How Long?” Or the intriguing “Full Moon Over Luna Park ”and“ Peak Downs Coal ”, songs that remind me a bit of work by someone like Tom Waits or his Australian compatriots from ‘Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds‘.
Occasionally it goes straightforward like in “Til Now,” Keep On Moving “and with the song” Leave Me Where You Found Me “that was recorded as the first single from this album . The album title track “Fever Dreams I” offered on the second video is based on a repetitive drum beat and sharp rock guitar sounds. Our favorite song on this album, however, is the beautifully sung acoustic Americana ballad “White Lightning“, a catchy song that continues to fascinate and intrigue from start to finish.
This record was recorded live and directly on tape by producer Jamie Hutchings, which definitely enhances the authenticity of Mark Moldre’s work. The fun mix of Americana, jazzy and bluesy tunes, Dylaneske folk songs and driving rock songs turns out to form a wonderful basis for a great album by this Australian singer-songwriter. – Rootstime.be
REDBACK ROCK From the retro, Rising Sun airs of opener, Fever Dreams II, through the raggedy blues romp of Leave Me Where You Found Me, to the beautifully moody, swampesque (even a touch of Dylan vocally) throes of Josephine, this is one very diverse musical journey.
Shades of yesteryear’s, bluesy jazz bars (How Long?), lazy, late night martini ambles (Full Moon Over Luna Park) and even some swamped, menaced plodarama (Fever Dreams I).
White Lightning is sparse and seductive, in its own beautifully lackadaisical way.
Til Now takes us on a more cowpoke flavoured venture with its Morricone cool and dusty saloon throes.
Keep On Moving keeps the countrified mode, with its racy train-ride rhythms, before Peak Downs Coal wraps it all up with its sad, sad shades and a slick, slow washover.