album - 8 April 2016
01) Special Metal
02) Heaven Takes No Prisoners
03) Planets We Once Knew
04) Say Hello, Electric Ghost
05) The Fading Light
06) Edge Of Nothing
07) All Our Yesterdays
08) Fuzz Rocket Fantasia
09) Rocking The Dreamboat
10) When Beauty Came To Call
11) Life And Death
12) Up On A Star
Special Metal is a mixture of vocal and instrumental pieces issued exclusively as a digital download album (April 8th, 2016), and the first release on the Tremelo Boy Records label.
The album was first mentioned on Dreamsville on 20 January 2016, and was created during a period when Nelson's main mixing desk was away for repair. The desk used in its place was an old desk with a number of faults, but luckily this didn't present too high of a hurdle. Work on the album was completed on 9 February 2016 when Nelson revealed a 14 song track list. However, at the mastering stage, 2 tracks, "Symbiotic Situations" and "Into the Blue Beyond (Fabulous Beings)", were removed, leaving a 12 track album. There is also at least 1 track, "Moon in My Window (Light in My Lamp)", that failed to make it to the proposed track listing that came out of these sessions. It remains to be seen what – if anything – happens to the 3 jettisoned tracks.
Available for purchase as a digital download here in the Dreamsville Store.
IF YOU LIKED THIS ALBUM, YOU'LL PROBABLY ENJOY:
Fantastic Guitars, Orpheus in Ultraland, Blip!, Blip 2, Electric Atlas, Captain Future's Psychotronic Circus,
Kid Flip, Joy Through Amplification, Fancy Planets, Fantastic Guitars, Tripping The Light Fantastic
"Special Metal is not a heavy metal album, although it features some abrasive guitars in parts...it is, in the main, a vocal album with rock overtones and with a few twists and turns here and there. I've not laboured any of the material on it, working very spontaneously with both music and lyrics. It has a nice rough edge and some reasonably sophisticated ideas too. I may have to dumb it down a bit!"
"This one I just see as a fun thing, not a, 'furrowed brow' album, not a major 'bleeding heart' statement, just a little rock n' roll diversion, a quick and noisy set of recordings for those who might be interested in such things."
"It's turning out to be a melodic rock album with some raw guitar playing in it, but it also has a couple of more ballad style tracks plus my solo version of "When You Wish Upon A Star", which is simple and sweet. I chose the title, more for the images it conjures than any literal interpretation."
"It's coming along nicely at the moment, despite me having to work around various shortcomings with my 'standby,' B-team mixing desk. To a certain degree, the problems limit what I'm able do with the material, but those compromises won't be immediately obvious to the uninitiated. It all brings a little less sophistication to the sound, (though I don't think you'll really notice the difference), and makes for a more direct approach to the basic performance, which, in turn, brings out things which might prove interesting enough in their own right."
"With over half the desk's on-board effects not working, there's a general lack of polish...but it still sounds very much like me. I'm working rather quickly though, everything more or less first takes, especially vocals which I'm literally throwing down, improvising lyrics as I go, which makes for some strange, stream-of-consciousness, disjointed weirdness, (sort of), and some random melodies. But, really, it's not so different to my usual rock type songs."
"I'm in the lucky position to be able to indulge ALL facets of my music via my recordings, including rock, jazz, pop, ambient, electronica, country, folk and neo-classical. Don't make the mistake of thinking that only one of these genres represents me or has become my main direction. The truth is, they all represent me and it's sometimes nice to make an album from the point of view of having a bit of frivolous fun with it. Everything doesn't have to be deeply serious or brow furrowed all the time, there's room for occasional lightness and play, little romps around the garden."
"Bill is BACK! Wow...this old man can still doo eet! Rockin' dude."
"Downloaded. Played first 30 seconds. Holy Shit!!!!!!"
"This is an instant favourite and I'm only two tracks in! Will be a gibbering wreck by track 12 if this keeps up."
"The opening number sets off the engines, and it flies from there."
"I am sooo happy. From note one. Where have you been hiding these songs, Bill? All it took was the Mackie to frustrate them out of you?
World class musician hidden from the world, surviving the brutality of the music industry on his on terms and snubbing the stage at the same time. Powerful stance that will be talked about for a long long time. This is transcendent."
Tourist in Wonderland:
"A definite rock & roll vibe to the first and last sample tracks (tracks 1 and 10), cool retro vox, great cutting guitar solos, all very shiny chrome in a non-harsh way, super-sexy vintage r & r which has definitely been souped-up to number 11 with a Bill Nelson modern twist...
"The Fading Light"...man, that's just blown me away, absolutely beautiful...and if you're into guitar, well let's just say, that's what great guitar is for me...yeah, it's just wonderful, sad, wistful, reflective...just beautiful...a track that could easily sit on The Alchemical Adventures of Sailor Bill...a brother/companion to "Moments Catch Fire on the Crests of Waves" maybe?"
"You call it an "outsider album". Well, I call it exactly the type of your music that I love the very best. I pray at the altar of your rockier side."
"While this is not a 'Metal' album, by any stretch of the imagination, there is a definite growling and chugging feel to the guitar work throughout. It definitely rocks!"
"You love to confuse us! First Jazz of Lights, which you say isn't really jazz, and now Special Metal which isn't really metal! I note the perverse pleasure you take in subverting genre!"
"I really really like it a lot actually. It feels fun! It's a great vocal album!"
"I really like the vocals on Special Metal! They were really standout to me!...Kind of more quirky and vital sounding. Not quite similar to your 80's vocals exactly but something kinda like that? That same sense of cool and fun comes through in my opinion."
"I remembered you saying this one was a bit of a trifle for you, which gives me a chuckle. Your standards are so high Bill. This could easily be another artist's pride and joy!"
"My favorites on Special Metal so far are "Fuzz Rocket Fantasia" and "Heaven Takes No Prisoners". But, as is typical with Bill's music, I am sure others will grow into favorites with time."
"For me Bill is at his best when he records albums like Joy Through Amplification, Special Metal, and Fancy Planets. They are edgier, the songwriting and lyrics are great, and guitar is front and center."
"It's great to hear Bill cut loose and shred."
"Great record with some tasty guitar work. Bill, you may have put the Vais and Satrianis of the world on notice. You make it sound effortless and fun! Definitely better than "side project" status though.
I would like to state that I can listen to Special Metal alongside Be Bop Deluxe recordings and I hear the same guy on both; not in any sort of derivative or repetitive sense, but in that the river has yielded another turn but remained the same body flowing on. The ageless quality of the voice definitely makes it feel like only a few days have passed since the recording of Futurama.
Health problems or no, Bill, this is some amazing work and you have every right to be proud of it. Thanks for sharing the ride."
"Special Metal is bloody brilliant. I may ask permission from Bill to play "when you wish…" at my funeral."
"I've been following your music since BBD & RN. I'm especially enjoying SM ( :oops: ) not that kind…this is a family forum."