Astrophysics Saved My Life

by Rivers Of England

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about

'So many questions. The meaning of love, life and the Universe. Can we understand? Are there any answers? "Astrophysics Saved My life" is the second release from West Of England folk rock band Rivers Of England. And on this outing they attempt to look at the interplay between science and life. It's an interesting approach. Opening the album "In Universe In Universe" explores the space within and without as they consider micro and macro infinities. One moment riff driven with strings providing the tension, one moment dreamlike, soft and fluffy, luscious. Lyrically they mention "photon particles" and "put love in your heart", there's a strangeness quark and charm here. And it carries on, weirdness of thought, visions that are lodged in your brain, images that stay with you, such as the delightful "You, Me And The Sea" where the song takes on a nautical bent as a relationship is compared to sailing a yacht "haunted by the future, haunted by the past, I only had a handkerchief to rig up to the mast". Lost at sea. Haven't we all been in that position?

There's a balance though as chief songwriter and vocalist, Rob Spalding, occasionally slips into comfortable and predictable clichés and easy rhymes. It's a small price to pay when you listen to "Underneath The Moon" a tale of a parting pair and the realisation it's possibly for the best. The track is gorgeously orchestrated with strings courtesy of Danyal Dhondy.

Indeed the music here is first class and varied, folk augmented with a tad of Blues, a smidgen of Jazz, a whiff of prog rock. It deserves a wide audience.

Add in the unusualness of including grid references for songs that point to alternatively Belgium, Norfolk, Shornemead Fort a disused artillery fort on the banks of the Thames, and the middle of the North Sea amongst others, then you have to wonder what's going on.

"All I want to do, exhilarate my brain, got to feel alive, 'cause living is a game". Rivers Of England certainly stimulated me. Will they you?

Ian Cripps, Fatea Records Magazine (www.fatea-records.co.uk/magazine/2016/RiversOfEngland.html

"Without doubt, Rivers of England is a band that softly combines the elements of folk and rock, but the mix also includes components of jazz, blues and psychedelia, with more than a touch of experimentation throughout. To understand you really have to listen.....More than simple folk-rock and far more complex than pop, deeper in expression, wider in scope, this album looks outward as much as it looks inward." Charlie Elland, FolkWords.

'‘Of Trivial and Gargantuan’ is a strong and accomplished debut that gently drifts its unhurried way into the psyche, and its tender, sweet sounds seem to have arrived perfectly timed for the summer festival season.' www.americana-UK.com

"this is delicate folk music, given a hefty treatment through arrangements with plenty of strings to take the acoustic guitars high into the atmosphere." David Hintz (www.folkworld.eu)

'There is so much inventiveness and freshness in this music, that contains a large-scale potential of development.' German online magazine “Rock Times” (www.rocktimes.de/gesamt/r/rivers_of_england/of_trivial_and_gargantuan.html)

'File this one somewhere between Alasdair Roberts and John Martyn. In other words, this is delicate folk music, given a hefty treatment through arrangements with plenty of strings to take the acoustic guitars high into the atmosphere. With the delicate vocals and powerful strings, I am also reminded of a folkier version of the band Fuchsia. All of these bands have a lot to offer and at first listen, the Rivers of England have songs that work well with this format and should stand the test of time. But don’t wait, give it a listen now while it is fresh and vibrant.' www.folkworld.eu

"Thoughtful but never painful, "Of Trivial And Gargantuan" is full of beautiful compositions: the folk-blues in two voices just tinged jazz of "To Feel Alive" line leaves a strong and clear in the footsteps of John Martyn, and "Bailbrook Lane "rereads years of the history of British pop for the more cultured passing of Peter Gabriel's" Solsbury Hill ", the Xtc of" Mummer "and David Gray, weaves between electroacoustic and memorable riffs that imprint in the mind the pleasant refrain." Ondarock (Italy) www.ondarock.it/recensioni/2014_riversofengland_oftrivialandgargantuan.htm
'A beautiful album that nourishes the soul through pure musicality and sublimely sensitive songwriting. A gargantuan triumph.' (Chris Vaudin)

'Very sweet...I like that a lot, a really lovely track.' (Sam and Richard @ BBC Introducing Bristol, about Bailbrook Lane)

'Highlights on Saturday were Rivers of England with their tender, delicate, meandering love songs.' (The Bath Chronicle, Bradford On Avon Roots Festival);

'Inspired by beauty, written with deep compassion and commitment to the result. Well done on the album that clearly has a lot of heart, keep following it.' (Waney Guru)

credits

released September 30, 2016

TRACK: "You Are Always On My Mind"
Lead vocals, arrangement and acoustic guitar: Rob Spalding
Electric guitar and backing vocals: Ian White
Percussion and backing vocals: Brian Madigan
Bass guitar: Jacob Tyghe
Backing Vocals: Gina Horn / Collin Gruenke / Christina Tramm / Mona Linge
Recording and editing: Bobbo Byrnes / Heiko Grein
Mixing and mastering: Josh Clark (Get Real Audio)

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"SONGS & WHISPERS" Bremen, Germany

"SONGS & WHISPERS" is a live - music and artist development network.

We present live music music in befriended places in Europe. We are putting on shows with international and local artist and are covering the genres: Alternative Folk, Alternative Country, Americana, Bluegrass, Singer-Songwriter and some unclassifiable music too.

"Songs & Whispers" live videos: www.youtube.com/songsandwhispers.
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Track Name: Universe In Universe
In universe in universe

Be humble - you're miniscule
the size of yourself
compared to those beings who hold
this universe inside.
You're a king on his throne;
think universes who have you as their home.
With this in mind a greater sense of the infinite you'll find.

Look up at the stars,
soon you'll realise,
it's not velvet with pinholes.
Enter a blackhole,
the bloodstream to a soul
that contemplates as you do.

To an alien race, we're in outer space
nearly 8 billion strong
the ignorance, wars and hatred - they would not stay too long

Look up at the stars,
soon you'll realise,
it's not velvet with pinholes.
Enter a blackhole,
the bloodstream to a soul
that contemplates as you do.

You know i think it's endless - looking in,
cos it seems that it is endless - looking out,
and you feel it in your bones
and you feel it in your brain

You're an ant on a molehill,
you're a photon particle,
you're a king on his throne,
think universes, that might just have you
a giant as their home.

Put space in your mind
put space in your mind
put your mind into space

Put fire in your heart
put love in your art
and get peace for yourself.

You know i think it's endless - looking in,
cos it seems that it is endless - looking out,
Take the pressure off yourself - it's ok.
Be aware and you'll always find a way.
Let it slide for a day.

Be humble - you're miniscule
the size of yourself
compared to those beings who hold
this universe inside.
You know i think it's endless - looking in,
cos it seems that it is endless - looking out,
and you feel it in your bones
and you feel it in your brain
Track Name: You, Me and The Sea
You, me and the sea

Through the stormy weather,
we were stronger when together
but soon, the wind changed out at sea
and i lost you and you lost me.

Our love it would change,
from mirrored sea
to a raging swell.

Daunted by the future,
i was haunted by the past -
i only had a handkerchief to rig up to the mast.
Now, I'm well within the harbour wall,
i sometimes gaze over the sea into the ocean's squall.

If i had not let go, there'd be cracks in your hull.
We're all draw to the sea, the greatest place to be free.

We try to seize control, but the moon can swallow whole.
To live, sometimes let go, sometimes you sail where the charts don't know.
Now, I only ask to be part of a ship, part of the seas and the skies above.

If i had not let go, there'd be cracks in your hull.
We're all draw to the sea, the greatest place to be free.
So ride out the storm, what hurts makes you strong.
There's always stars in the sky, you won't know til you try.
Track Name: Astrophysics Saved my Life
Astrophysics saved my life
I'm rolling down, where i rolled down as a child.
I like to ride from the city to the wild.
I roll away to solitude that i long for all the time,
and then it turns to loneliness - that's the trouble with my mind.

Friends - i thank, you stop me, you stopped me from feeling
so down in my heart and so dark in my mind.

For many years, I try to control my mind.
It might be true to say astrophysics saved my life.

Friends - i thank, you stop me, you stopped me from feeling
so down in the heart and so dark in my mind.
The science, the love plus you giving your time,
your time, your time, your time.

Again and again you give your time.
Time and time you give your time.
Again and again you give your time.
And time and time you give your time.

I thank you stopped me, you stopped me from feeling
so down in the heart and so dark in my mind.
Track Name: Underneath The Moon
Underneath the moon

When things are going crazy in my life,
I’m looking out the window late at night.
I sometimes feel I need the moon
To fill the prison of my room.

The world has got me all confused,
Darkness seems to grip me.
Why are we all so full of fear,
Who’s are the strings that keep us here.

[385 thousand kilometres, the average distance between the earth and the moon]
You used to stop me feeling pain,
You would find sunshine where there’s rain,
You used to walk out late at night,
Now that the moon’s out – I just might.

Underneath the moon,
I’ll seek my reflection,
Underneath the moon,
I will find my redemption
I will find my place in all of this.

It draws away my mind
From all of the tension;
Not to be alone,
But to escape their deception;
I fall awake and feel elation – validation.

[f = 1.98, by ten to the twentieth newtons – this is the force that keeps hold of the moon]
Sometimes when I wander up the hill,
People think that I am ill,
But seeing the stars is what keeps me sane,
I am not crazy – nor am I plain.

You know now that we weren’t meant to be,
Neither you nor I were free.
Just like the stars we should live our live.
You would have been crazy to be my wife.

Underneath the moon
I’ll find a connection.
I will realise
We were not in the same direction
And we did not share intention.

When I’m home again,
I’ve a sharper perception.
When I’m home again
I will feel - how I’m supposed to feel.
I will love – I could never give enough.
I will feel - how I’m supposed to feel.
I will love – I could never give enough.
I will feel - how I’m supposed to feel.
I will love – I could never give enough.
I will feel - how I’m supposed to feel.
I will love – I could never give enough.
I will feel….i will love….
Track Name: Norfolk
Norfolk

I’m still alive – how could that be
At last a breath from this life that’s killing me.
I worked so hard, as if a prize at the end.
If I don’t stop soon, I will not mend.

Take me, where the sky rules the land.
Let me set sail where the birds stay for winter.
Take me, where the land fears the sea.
Take me where my heart sings and I’m free.

Monday noon – I find I’m free to walk the lane.
I don’t care if it shines or if it rains.
I can’t believe I needn’t work so hard.

You’re still alive – how could that be.
At last a breath – now it’s time that you were free.
You worked so hard, but there’s nothing at the end.
If you don’t stop soon – you will not mend.

Monday noon – I find I’m free to walk the lane.
I don’t care if it shines or if it rains.
I can’t believe I needn’t work so hard.

Big sky, slow life -
Someday.

Leave the trenches of your crazy life.
Now is the time – it’s later than you think,

Set sail – take a look beyond your realm.
There’s nothing to fear but the fear that feeds itself.

Deep deep down – I don’t feel I’m from this town.
Mark my words – I’ll not hang around.
The Norfolk boy is slowly coming out.

Big sky, slow life,
Big lie, this fast life

Deep deep down – I don’t feel I’m from this town,
The Norfolk boy is slowly coming out.
Monday noon – I find I’m free to walk the lanes,
I can’t believe I needn’t work so hard.

Big sky, slow life,
Big lie – this fast life.
Birds fly, where the reeds sway.
Big sky, slow life…..
Someday.
Track Name: Waves
Waves
Waves, rolling through my memory,
Bringing in what’s lovely,
Washing out what’s ugly
And the suns’ light shimmering like the 70s.

She calls to me,
The maiden of the sea
A magnet to the northern pole,
A songbird to a tree.
Tears me – draws me.

And I am one with all upon the precious earth
And I’m at last at peace with all that we deserve,
As alone I ride the waves above the tide.

Then my love calls to me from far across the sea
And my heart longs for her
Although you’d think I’m free,
And I long to hold her -
A little absence can make you fonder.
Track Name: Born For This
Born for this

I was born for this,
I wasn’t born for fighting
All I want is peace
When my violence is released.

The profits weren’t for nothing
They must have been for something.
For me it’s really clear – the reason why we’re here.

All I want to do – exhilarate my brain.
got to feel alive – living is a game.
All I want to do – jump head first from a plane
And all I want to do is make some love with you.

I am drawn to this,
I’m having trouble working,
Working for the man
Was never in my plan

All I want to do – exhilarate my brain.
got to feel alive – living is a game.
All I want to do – jump head first from a plane
And all I want to do is make some love with you.
To surf another wave
To run another cliff
I will not behave
I’ll never say ‘what if?’

I was born for this,
I wasn’t born for fighting
We’re living to create,
Loving, dancing, writing

All I want to do – exhilarate my brain.
got to feel alive – living is a game.
All I want to do – jump head first from a plane
And all I want to do is make some love with you.
To surf another wave
To run another cliff
I will not behave
I’ll never say ‘what if?’
Track Name: Love, Science and Peace
Love, science and peace
I look inside my mind,
When I’ve made the time,
I need to find a light
To make the darkness bright.

To some a god-shaped hole,
To all a common goal
To regain control
And fill your mind with happiness.

To all you lonely souls
Take this little song
Perspective cures what’s wrong

You should be feeling love
You should be feeling love

The neurons in your brain
Are driving you insane,
Instead of sunshine
You get rain

You could be feeling love
You could be feeling love

You’ve been unlucky with the pain
Nothing left for you to gain
But something can sustain

You could be feeling love
You could be feeling love

I look inside my mind,
When I’ve made the time,
I need to find a light
To make the darkness bright.

To some a god-shaped hole,
To all a common goal
To regain control
And fill your mind with happiness.

To all you lonely souls
Take this little song
Perspective cures what’s wrong
And you should be feeling love
You should be feeling love.

The neurons in your brain
Are driving you insane,
But something can sustain

You could be feeling love
You could be feeling love

I look inside my mind
When I’ve made the time
I need to shine a light
To make the darkness bright.
Track Name: Urgh Work
Urgh work
Oh, no I woke up this morning
And remembered I had to go to work

I wish for 3 day weekends
But the bills are too hard to ignore.

You think that the wage
Will soon turn a new page
In your mind

There’s no light down the track
And there’s no turning back
Now you find.

The clock turns so slowly
It’s painful
I just cannot wait to get home.

This cold might
Just turn quite ugly
I must practice my performance
On the phone.

You think that the wage
Will soon turn a new page
In your mind

There’s no light down the track
And there’s no turning back
Now you find.

The bank says they’ll give me a loan
But I’m trying to save to go away
I want to see the whole world
But for now
I guess I’ll have to stay.

You think that the wage
Will soon turn a new page
In your mind

There’s no light down the track
And there’s no turning back
Now you find.

Oh no, I woke up this morning
And remembered I had to go to work.
Track Name: In The Barley
In the barley:
At the end of the day
When down is the sun
We go to the inn
When the harvest is done
The dancers perform
To an old country tune
And we're making love
To the light of the moon
The farmer and wife
Had a beautiful life
The village was small
But gleaming with life
But slowly it happened
I left it behind
Chasing money in the city
Now it's taking my mind
[Chorus]
I didn't mean to let you down
You know I've not been around
The further I run the harder to find
You know I've been gone too long
You know I've been gone too long
You know I've been gone too long
Now I'm stuck in the rain
With the clouds in my brain
I need a revelation just to be patient
So I walk in the fields
Where the crops strangely lay
I've seen balls of light
And I like what they say
[Chorus]
I didn't mean to let you down
You know I've not been around
The further I run the harder to find
You know I've been gone too long
You know I've been gone too long
[Chorus]
I didn't mean to let you down
You know I've not been around
The further I run the harder to find
You know I've been gone too long
You know I've been gone too long
You know I've been gone too long
Track Name: On The Spectrum
On the spectrum
Rowing down the river
You hope they never find you
You’ve got to get away now
Find your balance somehow.

They put you under pressure
You think you’re on the spectrum
They put you under pressure
We’re all on the spectrum

You love the stormy weather
Takes you out of yourself
A long walk makes you better
Hiding in the heather.
Track Name: Always On my Mind
Maybe I didn't treat you
Quite as good as I should have
Maybe I didn't love you
Quite as often as I could have
Little things I should have said and done
I just never took the time

You were always on my mind
(You were always on my mind)
You were always on my mind

Maybe I didn't hold you
All those lonely, lonely times
And I guess I never told you
I'm so happy that you're mine
If I make you feel second best
Girl, I'm so sorry I was blind

You were always on my mind
(You were always on my mind)
You were always on my mind

Tell me, tell me that your sweet love hasn't died
Give me, give me one more chance
To keep you satisfied, satisfied
Little things I should have said and done
I just never took the time

You were always on my mind
(You are always on my mind)
You were always on my mind
You were always on my mind

Maybe I didn't treat you
Quite as good as I should have
Maybe I didn't love you
Quite as often as I could have
Maybe I didn't hold you
All those lonely, lonely times
And I guess I never told you
I'm so happy that you're mine
Maybe I didn't treat you
Quite as good as I should have