From Shadow to Shadow
From Shadow to Shadow ...
This second collection from The Palers’ Project comes eighteen months after Lost in the Looking-Glass, and presents forty fresh tracks from the Brooker / Fisher / Trower / Reid repertoire, joyfully revisited and reinvented by over seventy musicians and fans from a dozen countries worldwide. Our title once again comes from a Keith Reid lyric, and again the songs we are shadowing cover all Procol Harum’s albums to date, now with Brooker, Fisher and Trower solo works, and a Paramounts piece in addition.
A shadow owes its nature partly to the shape it replicates and partly to the ground it falls on, and you will hear the shades of familiar songs crossing some unexpected musical landscapes, among them bluegrass, Latino, art-rock with its metrical tricksiness, synth-pop and psychedelia. A sumptuous orchestra keeps company with a lone busker; an eerily-accurate clone-song goes arm-in-arm with a changeling that we might struggle to place! Stowaway themes smuggle themselves from song to song, and words migrate from language to language; everyone has had a lot of fun.
The tracks have been recorded using anything from a single mic, hand-held in a punk-era audience, to the latest paraphernalia of the digital gizmocrat. A dozen represent postal collaborations, more than half of these transAtlantic: the wide circle of fans contains some close musical friendships. Some of the players have performed no further afield than their bedrooms, whereas others have toured the stages of the world alongside echt Procolers: one common enthusiasm unites them all. Please visit, and enjoy, the fully-illustrated track- and player-stories at www.palersproject.com
Yet the stars here are the songs, not the fans who have adopted and adapted them. Everyone has ‘played real good for free’ in the hope of communicating a devoted fascination with some inspiring words and music. Two-and-a-half hours spent listening to the shadows on this double CD should refresh our appetites for the definitive original tracks, and renew our admiration for the ultimate light-source, beyond these things: Procol Harum – long may they shine on brightly!
The Cause of the Commotion ...
Thanks and salutations to all the performers, and to Christine Ayre, Richard Beck, Martin Clare, Bob Kloner, Greg Normand, Jens Anders Ravnaas, Piers Warren, Ben Wong and John Wooff for help along the way. Particular thanks to Gerry Guthrie for the cover illustration, which is entitled ‘Strength in Numbers’; and to Simmons Graphics in Memphis for the printed CD inserts – Roland Clare, ringmaster.
This collection is dedicated to the memory of our fellow-traveller, Gothic Harris, 1954–2004