LOVE AND RAIN IN AN ENGLISH WINTER
The next album by Maxx Silver has the working title of "In Recovery" from which "We Can Make It Through" is taken.
" I wanted the songs to really communicate with the listener. its a much more personal record that the previous album Escape. I was trying out a type of pop song on that album. The next one is more uncompromising, more electronic and sometimes quite gothic. Its a very moody, atmospheric collection."
On the song "We can make it through" there is a whirlwind of different song sections and the documentation of a crisis.
"It was really dark, the atmosphere I created. But I kept going back to it. There was something a bit compelling about it. It was like ironic healing, to keep hearing it. It actually helped me. But everytime I heard it I would say what the **** is that? Did I really write that?
I wrote it during an isolated and lonely wet Winter in the UK and originally improvised the first line "Winter is a time of death, barest branches bring no light " to express how much I was hating being inside. After that I agonised over these lines, thinking they were too depressing but, eventually decided to keep them on the basis that I wanted to break new ground and they were after all honest!
The song is mainly about how I was missing someone greatly who apparently no longer wanted to be in my life. I was also unemployed, which meant an additional sense of isolation. I didn't want to go out in the constant rain. It was a prison I could not escape. There were definitely some issues there as well that I happily have dealt with. This was all before CV-19! But when that struck, I suddenly had song lyrics about being anxious, alone and isolated that had a whole new interpretation. But it is about me, really but we probably have all felt those feelings in these difficult times.
I WOULD WALK WITH YOU TIL SUMMER.
The first verse is finished with the line "Can I Make It Through?" followed by a haunting instrumental melody
"With the second verse, I was looking at the rain, and everything felt sad. But I told myself in reality, I'm very lucky to be here even if I am on my own. I'm starting to look for the positives .
The third verse is the point where there is a crisis in my mind, but then, the person I have missed for so long, is at the door (hence the shouts of "the door, the door" at a time when I was feeling low as I "wonder what I'm good for"
Isolation makes you question your worth as a person, and the song was doing that in real time. Seeking out someone is the best thing you can do, in that situation.
Its a very dark song, though the music swirling around it is more forceful and positive than the lyric. I joked with someone that it was "miserable Prodigy" as the rhythm is actually drum and bass, fed through a mangle.
And then comes the final seconds where things resolve amid a sweet swirl of a glockenspiel.
WE CAN MAKE IT THROUGH
It is a bit of a relief to get through it!
The instruments I used were fairly usual for me. I combined my drum rhythm with my Akai drum machine which has a number of rap and hip hop effects. That makes the whip like sound with the percussion. It also triggers random other effects from the Synth, which adds unexpected little bleeps to the mix. There is a little bit of electric guitar at the start as the synthesiser string part comes in but the track is entirely synthesised otherwise. I used a combination of presets for the strings, combining them and adding reverb to my 24 track studio.
I added the bass part last - the track actually existed quite happily for a while without a bass part, but I needed something to anchor the piece."
Initially just two chords - major and minor, but everytime it goes major it is dragged back to minor again, except at the end which is a major chord.
For the video Maxx went to Dolypers Hill, South London and Knole House in Sevenoaks, to film deer, bare trees and half built buildings.
"I rarely do a traditional music video but I was short of footage, especially with the Lockdown, so decided to reveal myself again. Part of it is filmed in my bedroom and you can see my camera in the mirror!"
Mr Silver now has a more serious wig, having dropped the rainbow punk edifice. Nice jacket too Maxx!
Rob Harvey of Synth City (98FM Phoenix FM) picked up the track and played it on the show several times where it was compared to both Depeche Mode and early Ultravox.
Says Maxx " I was really grateful to Rob for the support which has given me motivation to get the next album completed. As I never did see this particular track as a single, it was heartening that is went on a little adventure"
It was also played on Artefaktor Radio, Mexico City on 18/5/20