From an email originally sent to supporters of our new album campaign

Dear All,

You’re receiving this because you are one of the staggeringly awesome music fans who supported the making of The Little Unsaid’s new album campaign recently.

I wanted to get in touch personally to say thank you, your support at this time really does mean the world to the band and I.

I also wanted to give you a quick update on how the album making process is going so far, seeing as though you’re the ones who’ve helped make it happen. This information is yours to do with as you wish, so feel free to toss this email in with your spam and other processed meats if your take on this is ‘I couldn’t care less, just send me the record when it’s done and leave me alone.’

Right at the start of this next phase of lockdown here in the UK we spent a week working away in a lovely little studio in East London. The logistics of getting everyone in the band together for these recording sessions have been trouser-splittingly complicated. Tim had to fly over from his home in Denmark well in advance so he could isolate for two weeks before the recording sessions (fortunately he quarantined in his ‘drum shed’ where he could happily practice the new songs into the early hours whilst ordering in a fortnight’s supply of take-away curry). Alison and Mariya had to juggle their schedules around other essential work and childcare and other real-life complications. I had to try finish the damn songs in-between various other projects and try find someone and somewhere to record them, whilst constantly expecting the current crisis to once again turn all plans to make music into a thick sludge of hopelessness.

Then, two days before we were meant to be in the studio, Lockdown Two was announced, and for 24 uncertain hours it looked like we would have to cancel everything. Plans, preparation, money all lost. Songs shrivelling in my brain like neglected fruit. I phoned everyone and ranted and squealed and then drank wine. Fortunately, after the usual apparently obligatory 24 hours of panic and confusion, it was eventually confirmed that professional studios count as places of work this time around, and could therefore remain open with restrictions in place. Thumbs up. All systems go.  

So our studio became a sort of bunker in those early days of another eerily quiet locked-down London. I cycled everyday through the ghost town, crossing the river in the chilly autumnal air, and felt properly privileged to be able to go into work every day and make music that we all hoped would in some way reflect, illuminate and explode out of this weird time.

We’ve been really lucky to work with an amazing recording engineer called Grace Banks. She’s captured beautifully honest sounds for our new songs, particularly focusing in on the drum recording, which is something we’ve often rushed in the past due to time pressures. With Grace skilfully and calmly steering the ship all of us felt we could get lost in the songs more, and play exactly what was needed, nothing more, giving the songs and the sounds space to do their thing.

We worked constantly over that week as we had a huge amount of recording to get done, but to my amazement it felt in no way stressful or exhausting. I was waking up at 5am everyday wired and excited to get going, hearing new ideas or lyrics I needed to alter. It felt like my early experiences of recording, a teenaged hermit in my bedroom getting lost in the thrill of building an entire world with sounds. It was honestly the most wholesome recording experience I’ve ever had. We listened to music together every morning and ate overpriced pastries. We drank pretentious coffee as the morning sun shone in and said things to each other like ‘I’m getting notes of candied orange.’ We laughed and sang and talked openly about how tough this time has been for each of us in different ways. We left politics and The News at the door. We had late nights and drank beer and lost the plot, recording radiators being whacked and cymbals being chucked around the room.

I think you’ll be able to hear all this when you listen to the record. It’s all in there, a kind of grateful undercurrent bubbling away defiantly beneath the beats and notes. You’ll sense five people lost to the task of trying to capture something positive and celebratory about this year. You might be surprised to hear this coming from this particular gremlin of the shadows, but I think this is going to be a very hopeful album.

I hope you’re all doing ok out there. I’m raising my glass to you all here in rainy South London as I plan the next stages of getting this record finished and ready for your ears. There is still much to do, and arranging it all has been a hundred times more manageable with all of your support. We can’t wait to fling this record through your letterboxes.

Thanks for reading if you made it this far.

Take care,

John & Band x