Waterboys: This Is The Sea Production Notes

Production Notes

Recording sessions for This Is The Sea began in early 1985 with Scott going into Park Gates studio in Battle, near Hastings. By the time the LP was mixed and ready to go, the band had booked sessions in 11 studios, using 12 engineers and assistants.


Scott and Mick Glossop produced the album with John Brand and Karl Wallinger also involved. Scott also recorded some demos at Seaview, Wallinger's home studio in Baker Street, London, and Wallinger also demo'd the music to 'Don't Bang The Drum' there. Anthony Thistlethwaite recalled later: 'One day we would be recording in one studio then a few days later I'd be doing sax overdubs somewhere else'. Thistlethwaite also remembers the band initially going to Park Gates and recording 'Beverley Penn', 'Medicine Bow', 'Then You Hold Me' and 'The Pan Within'.

'Trumpets' was the only song on the album recorded live – by Scott, Thistlethwaite and Wallinger at Good Earth Studios (now Dean Street Studios) in London. Wallinger found a celeste in the studio and made the spontaneous decision to play it on the track. Scott added only a few piano overdubs at a later date.

'The Whole Of The Moon' has a live energy and urgency, but it was recorded in a completely different way. Thistlethwaite has described it as 'a major labour of love' for Scott, who originally recorded the song with piano and vocals. Wallinger added the synthesiser and the bass synth, Lorimer overdubbed five trumpet parts and then Thistlethwaite added the saxophone solo at the climax of the song. The last element to be recorded was Chris Witten's drums. As Scott told The Quietus in 2011: 'Even when I did the demos I was imagining all the other instrumentation on top'.