That Thin, Wild Mercury

We were a band, not my first band since the ’95 break-up of Lowest of the Low, but one that I felt was almost ready to make a record. I think we had a name too, but that got lost during the making of “That Thin, Wild Mercury”. We rehearsed on weekdays at Randy Curnew’s warehouse space at King & Parliament – don’t go looking for it because I think it’s now a luxury furniture shop. Likely, mid- 2002 we went into Chemical Sound (also long gone), down the alley at King and Portland. Not even the alley is there anymore. We were working with my friend and talented singer/songwriter Alun Piggins. He was a joy to work with – we honestly laughed more than we worked, but the recording was wide open. Somehow during the sessions, the band crumbled. One person moved back east and one person just stopped coming to the studio, so Alun and I persevered – lot’s of late nights experimenting with sounds and loops – mostly just enjoying making something that nobody was waiting for… I remember Chemical Sounds well – about a year later Lowest of the Low reformed and we went in there to make “Sordid Fiction” with Ian Blurton – that was also a great session that produced an album that I still think didn’t get it’s due… John DesLauriers, Randy Curnew and Craig Browne did some really nice work on “That Thin, Wild Mercury” – by the time we took it out on the road though – the drums were being played by Jay Santiago – he did end up playing on two of the album’s tracks. Alun played bass for a short while, but I don’t really remember what happened after that. By the time Lowest of the Low swung into gear again there likely wasn’t time to do much of anything. One of my strongest memories was Derek Brady coming in to play piano on the track “Snakeoil Alibi” – I knew him as one of the city’s best bass players, but man he blew us all away that day. The night that Alun and I put the album to bed we went out to celebrate at some King Street bar, we knew we’d chosen the wrong place when a woman standing on the bar attempted to pour shots straight into our mouths… we didn’t stay too long. Making a record with Alun was unforgettable – still proud of this one to this day – but maybe just of the idea that we finished it at all…

Credits

  • Stephen Stanley – Vocals, Guitars, Keyboards
  • John DesLauriers – Bass, Vocals
  • Craig Browne – Guitars, Vocals
  • Randy Curnew – Drums

Special Guests

  • John Francom – Keyboards
  • Mark Kesper – Percussion
  • Alun Piggins – Vocals, Harmonica, Banjo, Loops
  • Derek Brady – Piano
  • Jay Santiago – Drums, Percussion
  • Brian Scriver – Trumpet
Produced, Engineered & Recorded by Alun Piggins at Chemical Sounds