I Am The Manic Whale have announced that they will release a new free Christmas download album on their bandcamp page next Tuesday. The Christmas Selection Box features covers of Chris Squire and Alan White's 1981 seasonal favourite Run With The Fox as well as Queen's epic Ogre Battle from 1974's Queen II, Joni Mitchell's The Dawntreader and more.
"As part of the funding process for releasing Things Unseen, we offered to record cover versions of songs chosen by fans," explains bassist and vocalist Michael Whitman. "These songs are collected together here for everyone to enjoy, alongside some live recordings of songs from Things Unseen and some new original material.
"Run With The Fox is a cover of Chris Squire and Alan White’s seasonal prog classic. The lyrics perhaps resonate particularly in 2020 as we face a potentially very different Christmas from the sort we might normally enjoy. There will be an accompanying video on the band’s YouTube channel.
"Zephyr is a cover and interpretation of an original song by Tim Lowth, rewritten and developed by John Murphy (keyboards) into a wonderful new song of epic proportions. Inspiration came in June in the great outdoors - just a pub garden during a family lunch actually (which we'd only just been allowed to do again!) We had a lot of fun seeing where Tim’s ideas might go and fitting them with a pastoral lyric idea we had.”
"Ogre Battle was chosen by Andrew Collier and The Dawntreader by Carl Hufton-Straw. Each of these covers follow the originals fairly closely in structure but have the usual Manic Whale magic sprinkled onto them. I was a bit unsure about covering a Queen song. I love the band and Freddie has been a long time hero of mine. I knew there was no way I could sing the song like him, but I hope we’ve put this into our own voice. It was great fun to record and a real challenge on the bass too.”
The collection also features some live material recorded during an October live stream and a brand new piece, Chronostasis. penned by guitarist David Addis.
I Am The Manic Whale: The Christmas Selection Box
1. Run With The Fox
3. Valenta Scream (live from lockdown)
4. The Deplorable Word (live from lockdown)
5. Ogre Battle
6. The Dawntreader
7. Build It Up Again (live from lockdown)