Stanley Odd – STAY ODD (track-by-track)

To celebrate the release of STAY ODD, Stanley Odd's first album in over six years, frontman Dave Hook talks us through the album track-by-track

Feature by Dave Hook | 13 Apr 2021
  • Stanley Odd

FUWSH takes a gathering collection of storm clouds and dances in the rain. It’s is a tongue-firmly-in-cheek story of resistance and resilience. A celebratory championing of anti-heroics and just being yirsel. You can hear us all mucking about in the studio at the end, AdMack saying: ‘It’s as if they want to get dropped from their label and they’re not even on one’, then Veronika laughing. Felt like a good statement of intent for the record.

Night Rip
Night Rip tells the story of a moonlight flit from both sides of a doomed relationship. Like both folks are planning to leave the other without telling them in the middle of the night. That’s why both voices sing the story. 

Champion? Sound
This title is a play on a ‘Champion Sound’ soundsystem-type lyric, with ‘Oh you’re the champion? Sound mate, whatever’. It’s about being so busy bragging about the big things yir doing that you forget to actually enjoy what you’ve got. The music started as a beat Dunt made while working on a cruise ship in the Pacific Ocean. The main riff is built around a Scruff Lee acoustic guitar part. Then it grew arms and legs in the studio.

She’s a Wee Witch
In Scotland if you hear someone say ‘She’s a wee witch’ it’s not usually a compliment, but I wanted to flip it to be a celebration of witches. So it’s about that place late-on in a hedonistic night, when the membrane between worlds feels paper thin, and you realise the person you’re with is pure magic. TLo found the most beat-up, out-of-tune piano that he could to record the keys for this. He took the front off it and you can hear him scraping the strings to make sinister sounds in the dying notes of the song.

The Invisible Woman
I love how Veronika came over on this track. She sounds great. The lyrics are about radical, rebellious women and the powerful things that they do but history doesn’t necessary credit them with. It’s also about how society sees women as they age, or rather doesn’t see women as they age. It also shouts out some amazing women along the way.

This is the story of my bike getting stolen as a kid… and the journey that it goes on after that.

Undo Redo
Undo Redo is a story of the seven-day cycle of wreck-hedonism. A journey through the netherworld of late nights, shot glasses, cigarettes, wine, clubs, forest floor canopies, brighter than bright eyes, exploding irises, cloud stepping, beautiful vagrants caught in the loop with one foot in the matrix... Crashing into Monday with a broken head full of static, jumping at shadows, a burst baw, heid buzzing like an angry wasp, trapped under a frozen lake, exorcising ghosts ‘til the fear goes away… Heel toe heel toe, ready to start again.

Where They Lie
This song was the first single off the album. It’s about being untruthful with economics and economical with the truth. Flat out lies become ‘alternative facts’. Dishonesty is the best policy. ‘Fake news’ is both a very real problem and a catch-all phrase to discredit genuine information. They lie on the ground and they lie where they stand. And this is the lie of the land.

We wrote this song years ago and recorded a bunch of different versions of it. Veronika’s vocals are from a session in Gorbals Sound. Mine were recorded in ma room in ma house. This final version got Frankensteined together in the studio and then Dunt produced the hell out of it.

Exciting Lives
The bones of this song were recorded at Teapot Studios in Perthshire in 2017. Then worked on it again in 2018 at Odd HQ, adding the TR-8 drum machine part and syncing it to the live kit, and some synth parts. It’s about getting mad wi it, and parenthood and the magic of everyday things.

Love Letters
A love letter to words – I dream in rhyme schemes – writing rhymes for the joy of writing rhymes. AdMack and TLo borrowed a bunch of analogue synths for the album sessions. It adds a sonic cohesion to a bunch of the songs. The verse parts for this are a combination of the Prophet-6 and Volka FM. Scruff Lee’s guitar tone is him playing it in the studio while I flick the pick-up switch back and forth.

KILLSWITCH is a drowsy, swampy, late-summer dawdle through 2020. I will be forever grateful to Panda for spray painting a Big Heid with ‘Stay Odd’ right on the front of the derelict ABC for the music video for this. It was a joy to watch and a thing of beauty to behold.

Bill Oddy 
A couldnae-care-less rammy of oddities, outcasts and underdogs. This feels like the new Stanley Odd anthem. A reviewer once described us as ‘defiantly untrendy’. I’ll take that. Dunt made the original beat before we went in the studio and called it Bill Oddy, then it just felt like the chorus wanted a sample saying that, so we found Bill Oddie’s This is Your Life episode and it fit perfectly. Young Ornithologists Club, ya bas.

Best Pals
This is a love song to the band. I don’t know if we’ll get to make another record and this one has been a real labour of love. It’s about the end of things and how things never end. It’s goodbye maybe. By the way – everyone in the band is singing the last chorus – all six voices are in there and I think that’s a lovely thing.

STAY ODD is out now via Handsome Tramp Records