Spiritualized will release an updated version of their fourth album, Let It Come Down, via Fat Possum on October 22. It’s the final instalment of the Spaceman Reissue Program, which has seen the band’s first four albums remastered on vinyl with new artwork.
As with the previous three records, Let It Come Down is presented in a gatefold jacket with reworked cover art by Mark Farrow. There’s also a limited edition ivory vinyl exclusive to D2C and independent record stores.
Let It Come Down saw bandleader Jason Pierce rebuilding Spiritualized after the core line-up dissolved following the intensive touring process of Ladies And Gentlemen… Dion’s Phil Spector-produced Born To Be With You was an influence. The initial recordings were made at John Coxon’s studio before some 115 different musicians were brought into Air and Abbey Road Studios to work on these 11 songs. Spiritualized had always made wide-screen music but this time the movie theatre was the size of the Coliseum.
Commenting on the album today Pierce recalls, “It all fell apart a little bit during this period. With Ladies & Gentlemen we had everything. We had Kate on keyboards, John on guitar, Damon [Reece] and Sean [Cook] on drums and bass and everything seemed to find its space in a beautiful way and then that fell apart. It just wasn’t there any more – the politics of being in a band. So, I was trying to build something out of that.
“I recorded demos for these tracks at John’s studio again. And it was just putting all these parts together, writing for instruments I’d never written for before, the basslines, the flutes and the French horns and I’d never done that. Changing instruments around so I would try the bass playing the flute parts or vice versa. So when it came to actually making the record it was like ‘well, all we need to do now is replicate those on the real instruments’ which is kind of what we did; an amazing time at Air Studios where we pulled in every instrument under the sun. Bass strings, bass clarinets, 10 trombones. And I remember talking to Dr John again and he said: ‘Nobody ever stopped to say how many you should have in a section?’ because there is no 10 trombones. There is no section like that.”
He adds: “It’s a funny record to me because in a way it’s so conventional but it’s got some of our most sublime moments. A lot of people say Ladies & Gentlemen is where it happened because it’s when they first got aboard, found out about this band. But people who got into it through Let It Come Down are as passionate about that album and then moved backwards to find the stuff that came before it. Some of it had ideas that didn’t quite hit but when it does hit, it’s way beyond where I thought it was gonna go; it’s got these extraordinary parts that I don’t think I could get anywhere near again.
“We were the best band when we ran at ‘we can’t really fucking afford this but let’s do it anyway’. I still think that if it’s gonna fail, it’s gotta fail big. And that’s okay. I still feel like that.”