MP3 Exile Inside - Ei060
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10 MP3 Songs
ELECTRONIC: Pop Crossover, ROCK: Glam
ExileInside release their second album'Ei060'on 10th October 2005 on Exilophone Records/Shellshock.
ExileInside is a wholly autonomous, self-funding project conceived in 2002 by British Singer/Songwriter Jake Shillingford, founder of the cult orchestral alternative band My Life Story who released three successful albums and six top forty singles.
Jake formed ExileInside as a reaction to 'rapid technology verses static attitudes' within the music industry. EI is a genuinely independent music project that funds its own releases through a small team of private backers called the Investor Angels. The scheme is based on the traditional notion of patronage characteristic of the old art scenes and music halls and is administered from the band's website https://www.tradebit.com
Released to critical acclaim, the success of debut album Ei034 threw Jake's innovative business model into the spotlight. Both 'new media' and avant-garde thinkers in the music industry have cited his concept as an exciting blueprint for true independence in music.
Jake frequently lectures on the subject, but is still regarded first and foremost as a singer/songwriter. Steve Lamacq recently described him as 'one of our most colourful lyricists'.
The new album Ei060 sees Shillingford deliver his most eclectic work to date. Co-written with Mal Campbell (Sophia, Hotel Motel) and mixed by George Shilling (Primal Scream, 22-20's) it's a multi-layered hybrid of Space Rock, Electro and New Wave underscored by Jake's signature wordplay, creating an otherworldly perspective on the human condition.
THE EARLY YEARS
Jake Shillingford was born in Southend on Sea, England to two artists. His father was involved in the early pop-art movement and once shared a studio with David Hockney; his mother was a talented fine artist and radical thinker.
Jake set up his first band at the age of fourteen, and then left school at 16 to pursue a career in graphic design. However, following his parent's separation, he found it easier to express himself through music. Renting a room in the red light district of Southend, he bought a guitar and joined Maggie's millions.
In 1985 he formed My Life Story with local musicians Mal Campbell, Anthony Hill and Norm Gravestock. The band released a self-funded single Home Sweet Zoo the following year on their own label.
In 1987 Shillingford moved to the big smoke to take a job as the in-house artist and designer for the venue Dingwalls in London's Camden Lock. At the same time he started a club night there called The Panic Station and acted as compere and DJ whilst also creating pop-art style furnishings; his partner Simon Benny booked the bands. Between 1987 and 1990 the venue played host to early gigs from The Stone Roses, Happy Mondays and The Red Hot Chilli Peppers, among many others. Unfortunately not all the bands they booked were as exciting as these. Becoming bored with the lack of 'style and showmanship' in the grey four piece rock band formula he found himself promoting, Jake decided that the music scene needed to get glitzy.
He embarked upon an ambitious project to recreate My Life Story as a mini-orchestra, an escape vehicle for the anthemic songs he was writing. "I was listening to a lot of 60's soundtracks at the time... Barry Ryan, John Barry and the Barry Grey Orchestra, basically anything that had a Barry in it"
With no record company backing at this stage, he set out on a recruiting mission. He sidled past the doormen at the Royal Academy Of Music and began his search for musicians who could bring his new vision to life. "I literally snuck in behind a cello case on one occasion, placed ads on notice boards and harangued frightened musicians sitting on tube trains".
During this period, in a bizarre aside to the recruiting campaign, the drummer of The Specials; John Bradbury, invited him to stand in as frontman during the band's Spanish tour "For just one week, I Became the lead singer of one of the most seminal bands of all time, It gave me a taste and I wanted more".
MY LIFE STORY
By 1993, Jake and his 12-piece ensemble became the first band ever to record at George Martin's Air Studios during its conversion from church to studio. Produced by Giles Martin, (the son of Beatles legend George Martin) the first proper MLS single, Girl A, Girl B, Boy C was a bizarre love triangle with a big band soundtrack. All foxy horns and horny foxes, it was released by indie label Mother Tongue and possessed a sassy swing which sounded gloriously out of place in the year of grunge. NME and Melody Maker made it 'Single Of The Week'.
Releasing the debut album Mornington Crescent to critical acclaim, MLS toured extensively in the UK and France, headlining over Oasis and supporting Blur and Pulp. In 1996, MLS signed to Parlophone and released their second album The Golden Mile. All five singles from the album became top forty hits including 12 Reasons Why I Love Her, Sparkle and Strumpet.
The My Life Story orchestra were in high demand during the Britpop era, with notable appearances on the Morrissey track 'Interlude', and a collaboration with Marc Almond and Jake's hero PJ Proby on the 1996 album Legend.
Feeling that he'd taken his pop plus orchestra formula to its natural end, Jake released a final album under the MLS banner. Joined up Talking came out in 2000 on IT Records and spawned the band's sixth top forty hit It's a Girl Thing.
But it was MLS's release of the spikey and electronic, If You Can't Live Without Me Then Why Aren't You Dead Yet in 1999 as the UK's first internet only single, that set the precedent for things to come...
Jake saw this release as a powerful tool for the band and realised the potential of direct communication with fans. "I was always a big advocate of fan clubs and loved the feeling of being part of something inclusive, I felt that the internet could offer this and perhaps even provide the infrastructure for my future recording output".
My Life Story disbanded with three consecutive farewell shows at the turn of the millennium. Jake then teamed up with Aaron Cahill who had created many of the MLS string arrangements.
"I've always had two extreme sides to my personality. Most people had seen my extroverted side with MLS, and I wanted to create something more introspective and subtle. Taking the name from one of their first compositions ExileInside were born.
During this period, Jake spent some time in New York while he and Aaron started writing Ei034, the debut album. "We developed a songwriting technique via email. This involved sending samples and passages of music transatlantically. Co-writing lyrics for the first time was also an interesting process. "Aaron would email me streams of consciousness, which I would pick through, and make sense of in my other world."
On returning to the UK, Jake set about recruiting his Investor Angels under the slogan 'MADE FOR THE PEOPLE, PAID FOR BY THE PEOPLE'. Funds were raised from a basic website until there was enough to finance the project. Students, bank managers, mechanics and even a silent investor from a multinational record company joined the scheme.
EI's sound was shaped by necessity and the budget they had at their disposal. "Electronica and dance was pouring out of bedroom studios at the time, it was the cheapest way to make music. We stole many dance sounds and samples and shoehorned them into our own, more traditional songwriting formulas." At a time where every other singer/songwriter has gone back to the acoustic strumming of the 60's, Jake is using the tools of the 21st century to make music that is contemporary in sound and timeless in appeal.
"ExileInside is an oxymoron. It defines the sense of feeling trapped and uncomfortable in your own skin and the inability we sometimes have in truly expressing ourselves. I wanted to try and get these feelings across in songwriting, but ironically this moniker has also taken on a secondary meaning: Using the infrastructure of the music industry but operating completely outside it".
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