album - 3 October 2004
01) My Electrical Empire
02) Hank Marvin Goes To Mars
04) The Home, The Light And The Third
05) Boyhood Rockets
06) Ocean Afternoon
07) All Aboard The Skylark
08) Spacesuit Parade
09) I Remember Circus Boy
11) Country Cola
12) Scenic Elevator
13) Dreams Returning To The Night
14) Hostess Twinkie Vapourised
15) Until The Blue Whenever
Custom Deluxe is an album of guitar instrumentals issued in a one-off print run on the Universal Twang label. It is unconfirmed whether 500 or 1000 copies were pressed.
The album was one of three simultaneous released albums, issued at the start of the Be Bop Deluxe and Beyond tour. At the end of the tour the album was sold exclusively through S.O.S. Custom Deluxe sold out within 12 months of its release, and Nelson retired the Universal Twang label with this release.
Custom Deluxe is currently out of print, but likely to be reissued as a digital download on Bandcamp.
IF YOU LIKED THIS ALBUM, YOU'LL PROBABLY ENJOY:
Plaything, Wah-Wah Galaxy, Illuminated At Dusk, Gleaming Without Lights, Dreamland to Starboard,
Romance of Sustain, Plectrajet, Luxury Lodge, Loom, Astroloops, The Awakening of Dr Dream
"The Home, the Light and the Third": "I'll let you in on the secret of the title on that one: The tune's title refers to three old, (now non-existent), BBC radio stations from the 1950's that I was familiar with as a boy:-
'The Home' refers to the 'BBC Home Service'. 'The Light' refers to 'The Light Programme' (another BBC station which was a '50's equivalent to today's Radio One). 'The Third' refers to the BBC's 'Third Programme', which was a '50's version of today's BBC Radio 3, (a mostly classical music channel). For those of us of a certain age, and from a working class background, the tune's title will evoke childhood hours spent listening to radio before our families could afford the luxury of television."
"Hank Marvin Goes to Mars": "This piece not only hints at Hank's glistening-chrome sound, but features a Duane Eddy style reverbed tremolo too. The tune begins with cute electronic satellite bleeps and beeps before settling into a gentle melody underscored by arpeggio chords and a synthesised beatbox rhythm. There's a nice harmonised guitar section with an almost Polynesian feel followed by a more overdriven, sustained section. The piece ends with a looped reverse guitar coda and the return of the opening electronic bleeps."
"One album that has really snuck up on me is Custom Deluxe. Has anyone else noticed how incredible this album is? I think Bill just pulls out all the stops with this one, combining every possible guitar style he has ever entertained, along with a whole bunch of new ones. The way songs like "I Remember Circus Boy" drift effortlessly from acoustic to electric, from jazz to rock, it's just amazing. Every single track is an absolute standout.
I want to call this a monster Jazz guitar album but that simply does not do it justice. This music can only be classified as Bill Nelson music and that is that.
Anyway, if, like me, you may have given this record short shrift in the wake of Romance of Sustain and Whimsy and all the other wonderful stuff Bill released last year, I heartily recommend that you give this an immediate listen. And if you don't own it, you are missing out on a real treat! Pure, blissful ear candy!
I would even go out on a limb and say that this is easily one of Bill's best guitar albums EVER!"
"Custom Deluxe has just grown and grown. I find myself playing it on walks - in the tub - in the car - at work."
"I made myself a captive audience to Custom Deluxe today in the auto-mobile-stereo, and hey, you know what (?), it's full of tasty treats."
"Custom Deluxe is crammed full of goodness. Being drawn myself to the 'darkside' of Jazz music, I find "I Remember Circus Boy", and "Synchromatic" particularly memorable (a shiver down the spine every time I listen to them)."
"Playing Custom Deluxe in the car this morning, "Country Cola" came on
and this track makes me feel I'm riding in the wild west as a cowboy."
"Hostess Twinkie Vapourised"..."Absolutely magical."
"Ocean Afternoon": "from Custom Deluxe is just a magical piece of music and is so dreamy. As I close my eyes, I can imagine them far off summer days with ice cream footballs."