Crow's Nest/ Nid de Pie
Like nothing and everything you have heard before, Claire Jenkins Avec Band with producer Don Kerr bring you their fantastic, fantastical album Crow's Nest/ Nid de Pie. THE ALBUM This low budget epic was recorded on December 19th, 2006 in sequence and with no overdubs. M. Don Kerr's living room and dining room became the upper extension of Rooster Studios. Cables were passed up through the heating vents. With twenty-three microphones in place, vision, and a genuine adoration for cracking each other up, the album was recorded. Special effects were recorded on March 7th 2007. This included: rocking chairs, boxing gloves, bells plunged in water and the hydrophone, a Don Kerr Invention. THE MUSICIANS This sonic romp was arranged and played by: Sean Cotton (The Undesirables), Claire Jenkins (Band Leader), Brad Hart (Peter Katz), Tom Howell (CBC's Word Nerd), Treasa Levasseur (Massey Hall Dec. 6/ 2007), Joe Phillips (London Ontario Symphony) and Producer Don Kerr (Ron Sexsmith). All songs were composed and written by Claire Jenkins except Strange Weather by Tom Waits/ Kathleen Brennan which Claire translated into French and received permission to use. THE PRESS 'Captured in all it's glory' - John Sakamoto, TORONTO STAR, Anti-Hit List 'Enchanting' 'an intriguing audio vérité' - Tim Perlich, NOW Toronto 'A lovely debut album'- Sook-Yin Lee, DNTO, CBC Radio One NOW TORONTO - MUSIC FEATURE: SEPT 06/07 - TIM PERLICH - (ABRIDGED) From the homemade paper pirate hat Claire Jenkins has been rocking on stage lately - she's also wearing it on the sleeve of her enchanting new Crow's Nest/Nid De Pie CD - it would seem that the Montreal-born, Toronto-based singer/songwriter has either got a serious buccaneer fetish or she's never gotten over a childhood fascination with role-playing games. Jenkins's delightfully dramatic delivery suggests the latter, but it's really her foley-inspired approach to setting the mood for each narrative that betrays the indie theatre experience conspicuously absent from the biographical material she's sending to the press. Overseeing the single-day recording blitz, during which all the album's 12 songs were recorded in sequence sans overdubs, was producer/mixer Don Kerr, who added his own uniquely twisted tweaks to create an intriguing audio vérité document of the 'low-budget epic,' 'We took over Don's entire place, putting the drums, electric guitar and bass in the living room, and the marimba, piano, cello and acoustic guitar in the dining room, with a plexiglass partition in between so we could see each other. We ran cables through the heating vent to the studio set-up in the basement. 'To make the sea sounds, we filled the laundry sink with water and stirred it with a paddle. There were also wind sounds, creaking doors, feet walking - it was all done to create an atmosphere outside of what we were doing with the music. 'It was an unusal way to record - some people might say crazy - but we were able to take advantage of this amazing energy that came out of our extended conversation with instruments.' THE TORONTO STAR - THE ANTI-HIT LIST: SEPT 08/07 - JOHN SAKAMOTO 4. CLAIRE JENKINS AVEC BAND - 'Five and Twenty' As captured in all it's glory by local producer/musician/nurturer Don Kerr (Ron Sexsmith, Hidden Cameras, Rheostatics), this aching confession is one of those organic recordings that sounds so honest and unvarnished, you almost blush at being privy to such intimate thoughts. Guaranteed to make even the sunniest afternoon feel like the dead of night. THE LIVE MUSIC REPORT: SEPT 11/07 - ANDY FRANK - (ABRIDGED) Maybe it's the quiver. The gentle, unteachable, untameable quiver in Claire Jenkins' splendid voice, a vibrato that harkens associations with Natalie Merchant and Edith Piaf. Or maybe it's the eyes. In the small jam-packed back room of the Supermarket in Kensington, Jenkins introduces her visage through a round hole (created to resemble a ship's porthole) cut out from a loosely strung pair of white sheets that act as the tiny stage's curtain. As she sings the evening's opening number, her eyes playfully dance back and forth along perfect, smiling cheekbones. Long before the curtains are ripped down to reveal the full band, Jenkins has fully disarmed the audience. NOW TORONTO - BEST OF TORONTO NOV/1/07 - (ABRIDGED) He keeps a low profile, so no one really knows much about what happens at Rooster Studios, Kerr's home recording hideaway. But now and then one of his mysterious productions appears - like Claire Jenkins' wonderful Crow's Nest disc - leaving everyone wondering, "How did he do that?"...