Roy Watson presents
Good Morning, Mr Bland
Cemental Health Records EEG15
All tracks recorded at Winter Headquarters/Condemned Angel
except Sympathy For The Devil and Koyaanisqatsi
recorded at Ghetto, tarted up at Winter HQ/Condemned Angel.
Symnpathy For The Devil recorded Spring 1983;
Koyaanisqatsi recorded Spring 1985; vocal tracks on Word
On A Wing (two of three),
The Hand That Rocks The Cradle, Sunspots recorded March
tart-ups and all other recording executed August 1986–January 1987.
Produced by Roy Watson, engineered by Iain Walker.
Mixed at Ghetto 30/03/1987 by R.W.
Digitally remastered November 2004.
Thanks to John Catherwood, Endel Öpik and Iain Walker for equipment;
to Val Widdowson for the title; to CHealth for patience;
and to my dear friends who guested on vocals.
Cover: doctored reproduction of Masterpiece by Roy Lichtenstein.
This title (P) 1987, 2004 Cemental Health Records.
Roy Watson plays guitar, bass guitar, guitar outrage, keyboards, digital
samples, harmonica, recorder, balalaika, rhythm programming.
Iain Walker programmed the rhythm and plays second synthetic fiddle
The Roy Watson story: a word from our sponsor
One afternoon in 1982, having just set up CHealth and looking for a
roster of shit-hot young guerrillas, I was walking idly past a council
tip (as one does) when I heard a hauntingly, tearfully beautiful melody.
I knew at once I had to find its source and, picking my way gingerly through
the refuse, I caught my first tantalising glimpse of Roy: an elfin waif
perched atop a pile of rotting fish, clad only in a loincloth made out
of old Telegraphs and playing a set of Pan pipes as I had never heard them
played before (nor ever have since). Coming up to him at last, I
uttered the immortal words: “Stick with me, kid, and I'll make you a star.”
Within weeks he had grasped the principles of electronic sound synthesis,
and was hard at work creating the collection of pieces which subsequently
emerged as The Twinkie Plea (EEG05, a collection
in which I am proud to have assisted). I introduced him to Iain Walker,
who immediately spotted the potential of this fey young dynamo and offered
him a permanent gig with The Problem Of Pain. He's there to this
day, but has never fought shy of helping out with other CHealth combos,
and everyone at the label speaks of him with warmth, admiration, love not
untinged with a little awe.
In early ’84 I told Roy of a running joke I had with Val Widdowson:
it concerned freaking an ultra-straight neighbour of mine by bursting into
his bedroom at 5:00 a.m. shrieking, “Good morning, Mr. Bland,” and the
opening line of some popular ditty or another, tugging all the while at
his tripod and tufts. The anecdote inspired Roy to begin work on
this collection – a couple of those early works can be heard here, in updated
form – but, what with one thing or another, the project was repeatedly
delayed; in particular, Roy had always hankered after stable home and working
environments (entirely understandable in view of his background).
Finally, a few months ago he returned from his sabbatical spent working
alongside Micronesian scratch-artists with the necessary moolah to purchase
a place of his own and soon, comfortably ensconced in his very own pile
of rotting fish, he was working on ...Mr. Bland with a dervish-like intensity.
Roy, for all his radiant genius and unselfconscious saintliness, is
a self-effacing cove, and has never been persuaded to stand before a mike;
he prefers, he says, “the dynamic interactions possible with my dear friends”
by asking them to guest on vocals. I'm particularly humbled to have
been asked to contribute on so many tracks, and I know I speak for us all
when I say how much of a privilege it's been to have worked with such a
legend. We all salute you, Roy!
— Ian Shuttleworth
SOME OTHER NIFTY TUNES (from the MR. BLAND shortlist)
The Associates Those First Impressions • William Blake (arr.
Allen Ginsberg) Nurse's Song • The Boys Brickfield Nights •
Buzzcocks E.S.P. • Cameo Word Up • Bob Dylan It's Alright,
Ma (I'm Only Bleeding) • Fischer-Z Pretty Paracetamol • Ronnie
Lane How Come? • Magazine A Song From Under The Floorboards •
Michael Nyman Car Crash • Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark Almost
• Positive Noise ...And Yet Again • Prince and the Revolution
Park • Sly Fox Let's Go All The Way • O.C. Smith
Of Hickory Holler's Tramp • Talking Heads Psycho Killer • This
“Blue Piano” Angel • Ultravox! The Man Who Dies Every Day •
Scott Walker Dealer • Wire A Mutual Friend
Major recording companies are respectfully requested to indulge Cemental
Health Records’ tribute to some of the monumental noises they have produced,
and to excuse the teensy-weensy breaches of copyright attendant thereto.
Sympathy for The Devil (4:06) (Jagger/Richard)
Essex Music International. Vocals by Ian Shuttleworth. Original
recording by The Rolling Stones available on the album Beggar's Banquet
(Decca Records SKDL 4955 [800 084-1]). For the Cathcart family.
Koyaanisqatsi (3:01) (Glass) Dunvagen Music
Publishers Inc. Vocals by Ian Shuttleworth. Original recording
by Philip Glass available on original soundtrack album from the film Koyaanisqatsi
(Island Records ISTA 4).
Your Silent Face (6:28) (New Order) Bemusic.
Vocal by Eoin Patterson. Original recording by New Order available
on the album Power, Corruption And Lies (Factory Records FAC 75).
Glad To See You’ve Got Religion (3:56)
(Wainwright) publisher unknown. Vocals by Ian Shuttleworth.
Original recording by Loudon Wainwright III on Album I unavailable
I’m A Believer (2:30) (Diamond) Screen Gems/EMI
Music Ltd. Vocal by Ian Shuttleworth. Original recording by
The Monkees available on many compilation albums, notably The Monkees
Records DARTY 12).
Harry Lauder (1:28) (Shakespeare arr. Widdowson)
copyright control. Vocal by Ian Shuttleworth; sampled vocals by Ian
Shuttleworth and Iain Walker. Original versification available in
the play Macbeth (Act V, Scene v, line 21ff.).
River Of Money (4:49) (Forster/McLennan) Cherry
Red Music. Vocal by Iain Walker. Original recording by The
Go-Betweens available on the album Spring Hill Fair (Sire Records
Word On A Wing (5:11) (Bowie) Bewlay Brothers
Music/Chrysalis Music/MainMan Ltd. Vocals by the John Catherwood
Male Voice Choir. Original recording by David Bowie available on
the album Station To Station (RCA Records APL1 1327).
The Hand That Rocks The Cradle (4:57) (Morrissey/Marr)
copyright control. Vocal by Chris Stewart. Original recording
by The Smiths available on the album The Smiths (Rough Trade Records
Heaven Help You Now (3:45) (Haig) Het Gerucht.
Vocals by Ian Shuttleworth. Original recording available on the Paul
Haig album The Warp Of Pure Fun (Operation Afterglow OPA 003 [TWI
Sunspots (4:28) (Cope) Zoo Music/Warner Brothers
Music. Vocal by John Catherwood. Original recording by Julian
Cope available on the album Fried (Mercury Records MERL 48).
Your Silent Face [1985 demo, I.S. vocal] (7:22)
Word On A Wing [1985 demo, I.S. vocal]
Philip Glass’s The Laughing Gnome Suite 
(Bowie) Westminster Music. Original recording by David Bowie
available on many compilation albums, notably The Deram Anthology 1966–1968
(Deram Records 844 784-2).
Sobriety (after Leonard Cohen) 
(7:05) (lyrics Shuttleworth/ Turner, after Leonard Cohen; music
Cohen) Stranger Music Inc (BMI). Vocal by Ian Shuttleworth.
Original recording of Democracy by Leonard Cohen available on the
album The Future (Columbia Records 472498 2).