Rhys Marsh premieres whole of new album with Prog

Rhys Marsh

Rhys Marsh has streamed the whole of his latest album, October After All, with Prog. The ex-pat Norwegian based prog rocker releases the new album through Karisma Records this Friday. But you can listen to the whole thing below.

"I can quite safely say that October After All is my most heartfelt and emotionally open album," Marsh tells Prog. "The songs were all written just after I got married and our son was born, and I let the lyrics be a direct reflection of this.

"Like my two previous solo albums, i play most of the instruments, but this time I wanted to add more colours, so I invited some of my favourite musicians to contribute. 

"I love working with instruments that are more known in other genres, and on October After All I brought in elements from jazz and country music, set into the late-seventies feel that the album has. Working with the guest soloists was a real pleasure. here are some of my experiences.

"I asked pedal steel guitarist Roar Øien to play like his guitar was on fire. Once we’d dialled-in the most brutal tone he’s ever had, taking him completely out of his comfort zone, he nailed an incredible solo on Let It Be Known.

"Jazz saxophonist Kåre Kolve, who’s been a session musician for about thirty years, added some gorgeous call-and-response to Golden Lullabies, bringing a timeless ballad feeling to the song. he also plays the most beautiful saxophone solo i’ve ever heard on the album’s closer, (It Will Be) October After All, which for me is the most direct-from-the-heart song that i’ve ever written — a song which was set in the moment that my son was born, and all the thoughts and emotions that were racing through me at the time.

"Arve Henriksen added some of his stunning and unique trumpet to 22. I’m a big fan of his solo work, but i also love what he did in David Sylvian’s Nine Horses project. the way he bends notes, and lets them gently break, sounds like a haunting and sorrowful voice.

"I played on one of Tim Bowness’ albums a few years back, so it was lovely that Tim wanted to contribute to my album as well. i had quite specific choir parts worked out, but he gracefully stepped outside the box and added some really lovely details.

"I’m absolutely thrilled that musicians of such calibre were willing to be a part of this album. In terms of the sound of the record, the songs decided for me that they needed to be set into a late-seventies soundscape. i only used vintage keyboards — the newest being from 1981 — and it was mixed on a big old analogue console."

A listening party for October After All will take place at Trondheim's All Good Clean Records on March 9.

Rhys Marsh