Summer Into Winter/North Marine Drive is a collaboration between Ben Watt, formerly of Everything But The Girl and Robert Wyatt. Robert Wyatt was a huge influence on Ben Watt. This LP features a sublime cover of Bob Dylan’s You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go and will appeal to fans of Nick Drake. Limited to 500 copies on virgin white vinyl.
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- Summer Into Winter / North Marine Drive by Ben Watt & Robert Wyatt
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Ben Watt’s first two solo records the Robert Wyatt collaboration ‘Summer Into Winter’ and ‘North Marine Drive’ are two of the most beautiful ‘bedsit’ records recorded in the cold days of the early 1980’s. I’d always assumed that they were Ben Watt records with Wyatt helping out on ‘Summer Into Winter’ but this re-issue sees them grouped together under both artists names. Slightly strange when you consider Wyatt only appears on 5 tracks.
Still, quibbling aside it’s wonderful. ‘Summer Into Winter’ is a bleak EP with shimmering guitar and Wyatt’s trademark loose piano playing and distinctive voice appearing from time to time. Tracks like ‘Aquamarine’ have gorgeous atmospheres that will appeal to fans of Durutti Column whilst ‘Slipping Slowly’ has amazing vocals drifting into the stratosphere. God I love this record. But perhaps not quite as much as ‘North Marine Drive’ a record I spent most of my adolescence playing over and over again. It’s a companion piece to Everything But the Girl partner Tracey Thorn’s ‘A Distant Shore’ - jazz inflected guitar playing and smokey vocals. ‘Some Things Don’t Matter’ makes you want to wear a beret and smoke a ‘funny’ cigarette. It’s the perfect example of a down at heel young man ruminating on love and life. It’s one of the few albums on which I’m completely ok to hear a saxophone.
Nothing is better though than the soft warmth of the title track - perfectly encompassing the wild beauty of Scarborough and the North Yorkshire coast in three minutes of brilliance. i think I’m going to go and cry.
9/10 Steve Pope-carter Customer review, 3rd August 2018
Still got my original vinyl which gitva bit hammered over the years..pure poetry and angst..quite scratchy now but I love it..bobby w with the most plaintive voice ever is a genius in my opinion....anything he does gets hairs on my neck going, not quite in the MES reading the telephone directory/john peel dcenario/category thing but close!
EBTG were of course a teenage bedsit fave and this just followed on from my love for them..
As a footnote the recent-ish revival of ben watt and bernard butler is def worth a listen.
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