The Projects released their fourth and final album, Elektrichka's Favourite Party Record. Mira Aroyo duets on most of the songs.
You can listen the album on Soundcloud (below) or on Spotify. Also you can buy it from iTunes (digital) or from Tip Top Records (vinyl).
The Projects, the brainchild of the late Graeme Wilson, released their final record on Tip Top Recordings on 19 May 2014. Elektrichka's Favourite Party Record, the fourth album by The Projects, has been completed three years after his sudden death at the age of thirty seven in December 2011.
Wilson who suffered from MS had begun recording the album, which he felt would be his most accomplished to date, with a vast array of talented and long term musician friends such as Mira Aroyo (Ladytron), Dino Gollnick (Lightspeed Champion, The Beatings), Koichi Yamanoha (Grimm Grimm, Screaming Tea Party), Ricky Maymi (Brian Jonestown Massacre), Mon Chan (Bo Ningen), Alex Lawton Mawdsley (Comet Sands), and Matt Simpson (The European).
"His death may have cut The Projects tragically short, but this album is the one that brings Wilson's cosmic, collaborative vision vividly to life". (eMusic)
"Haunting, otherworldly pop that sounds like a cosmic missive from Krauter space". (Wondering Sound)
"A catchy blend of krautrock and persistent synths". (Artrocker)
Sadly Graeme never saw the album completed, but everyone involved thought it would be a fitting tribute that it was finished and a few months after his funeral they went about the task of putting the recordings together. Mira Aroyo, who duets on most of the songs, explains the process:
"Koichi picked up Graeme's computer and Paul, Koichi, Mon Chan, Alex and I started to make sense of it all. It was really sad and weird but somehow made us feel like he was totally there and so it was kind of fun too. We found what we thought were the latest versions of songs. We were certain we wanted to meddle with things as little as possible. Some of the tracks had names written in Russian. We had to decide which bits needed fixing and redoing. It was very hard so we went for 'would Graeme like this'. We went in (to the studio) over four long days and finished the vocals, re-recorded some of the drums and mixed. We used the three songs he had already mixed as reference. Luckily he had already sent me all the lyrics that needed recording. He was actually very organized in his chaos. The studio overlooks Kensal Green Cemetery and the rain was pouring on a funeral procession when we arrived. It was even spookier at night, with LED candle lights flickering here and there in the dark sea of graves. The hardest part for me was mixing, as that gave me more time to think about what was actually happening. It was heart wrenching. I realised that this would be the last time I would hear Graeme's voice without music behind it".
The results are remarkable and Elektrichka's Favourite Party Record is a truly inspiring piece of work. Thirteen tracks, mastered by Paul Jones (Stolen Recordings), the album includes the download single "Set a Course For the Stars" and captures the perfectly formed type of skewed pop that Wilson and The Projects had been crafting over the years.
Too many highlights to mention, but tracks such as "I Have to Use Words", "Emma Nutt", "I'm Learning Chinese", "A&E/ITU", "Anne Is a Socialist" and "I'm In LLLLLove" are the sort of catchy, krautrock and electronic tunes that The Projects and their contemporaries such as Stereolab, Quickspace, Broadcast and more recently The Horrors excel.
A true musical maverick, Wilson, a former member of John Peel favourites Miss Mend and the Television Personalities, formed The Projects in 2001 with Alex Lawton Mawdsley and released the debut album Let's Get Static in 2004 which was followed three years later with Voice Is Glue and then Words of Love Broadcast in Code in 2009. He began working on Elektrichka's Favourite Party Record soon after.
"It's all finished except for vocals on a couple of songs. O wow, it's such a shame that I can't play it to you! I'm sure you'd love it!”. (Graeme Wilson, 2011)