It wasn't long after Underfoot came out that I knew I should have done a better job producing. The record wasn't bad. It was just timid and safe. It didn't pop. And it didn't grab very many people.
I knew we weren't the best musicians around. We played as well as we could in the studio. I had thought part of the reason the record wasn't great was that we hadn't played well enough. That was wrong. Both playing and singing were way stronger than I had thought. Given a better mix, that became delightfully obvious to me. I heard how the drums and bass locked, and how the guitars worked in support. Mostly I heard some great vocal performances, especially by Cilla. I love the range of expression in her singing.
I really had no idea a remix could make this much difference. And this is with the engineer and I being mindful of not fixing too much. You can hear the misses because we left them there. This is the real thing, all recorded back in 1985. But you can also hear how little would "need" fixing even if we were going for perfect the way many do now. Tempos slide a bit. We did not play with a click track. I don't think we could have at that speed, and I don't think we would have wanted to. But for the most part the rhythm is solid. You can dance to it.
Only one "wish I had caught that" so far. I'm sorry the cowbell isn't a bit higher in the break in "Short Wave." It's the Morse code sound, and that's the one place where it should come up. I imagine I will hear more regrets, but I not going to sweat any of it.
Mostly Still Underfoot is only eight songs, a small slice of a particular Underachievers period. The band recorded one other time at Euphoria (the first "Friend o' Mine" and a cover of "Boys") and several times at an eight-track studio called Radiobeat (the earliest tracks were with a different drummer). I would love to put together a Radiobeat Sessions collection with "I'll Be There for You," "Wasted Youth," early tape-only songs like "Get Out," and maybe even "Crosswalk," never released in any form. I might also put some more marginally recorded stuff on SoundCloud.
On Bandcamp, the album has some pretty standard pricing. I did that because music and art are worth something, and none of it happens for free. But I don't want friends or even acquaintances to pay unless they want to. If you know me, hit me up. I have more download codes than I will ever use—unless the record explodes. Think that's likely?