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New In The Heavens

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21 March, 2009

Singles now shipping

This has been quite a week...

The first two Occultation singles, The Wild Swans' English Electric Lightning and The Granite Shore's Tomorrow morning 3 a.m. arrived at Occultation HQ on Tuesday morning. We then had a marathon numbering and signing session which went on late into the night and then we started processing orders on Wednesday. We managed to get a first batch into the post on Thursday and some people in the UK received these on Friday morning – hopefully those sent to Europe and the rest of the World should start arriving very soon. We decided that, because so many people had ordered so far in advance (almost 3 weeks in some cases), we'd send all advance orders out by First Class post even though this costs us a lot more than the P&P we've charged, but we wanted to say a big "thank you" for your support.

We got a lot more orders out yesterday (20/3/09) then did several more trips to the Post Office today and the result is that we've now posted all orders placed over the first 3 days of advance ordering (up to 1st March 2009) plus quite a lot of later orders. We expect to send all remaining orders out on Monday and we'll send all advance orders First Class. We also decided to use two protective stiffeners on all orders because we didn't want to risk the possibility of records being damaged in transit. So we're doing everything we can to try and make sure that your records reach you in perfect condition.

We'd be grateful if you can let us know when you receive your orders as it's very useful to us to know how long it takes and whether posting First Class really does make a difference. Quite a lot of people have already done this and we'd like to thank them. It's been extremely pleasing to hear that so many of them are so impressed by how beautiful these records are as artefacts. We've worked extremely hard over the last few months to try and make them as gorgeous as we possibly could. As Paul Simpson of The Wild Swans noted on this blog entry on his MySpace page, we've spent an absolute fortune making these and we actually expect to make a loss on them, at least initially. We'd always wondered why so few people release records in 10" format – now we know it's because a 10" single costs considerably more to manufacture than a whole vinyl LP. But we decided we wouldn't let that put us off because... they may be expensive but they are utterly stunning and we have kept the price as low as we possibly can, especially for those of you who've supported us by buying both of our first two releases together.

Anyway, thanks again to those people who've contacted us with such kind words about the records – do let us know what you think.

For now these singles will remain available only from the Occultation Shop although there will be a full national UK release for the vinyl in a few weeks and also a full digital release via the usual channels later in April. We're already making plans for the third Occultation release, which will be another single by The Wild Swans, which we hope will be recorded in early April. Then a second Granite Shore record will follow probably in the summer and work on albums by both artists will be going on over the next few months.

We're hoping that we might get a bit of press and some radio airplay over the next few weeks. If anyone out there happens to hear either of our singles on the radio anywhere or sees anything in newspapers or magazines, we'd be grateful if you could drop us a line.

We're enormously proud of both of our first two releases, we think that English Electric Lightning is The Wild Swans' finest record since The Revolutionary Spirit in 1982 and that rarely can a group ever have come back with such a strong record. As for the 'b' side, The Coldest Winter For A Hundred Years... well, it's simply an extraordinary evocation of time, place, friendship and loss. Oh and low temperature. It was very cold that year. The Granite Shore's Tomorrow morning, 3 a.m. is that rare beast, a narrative epic that works. These two records are very, very different, but they're both breathtakingly ambitious, reaching for the moons. Why settle for less?

Thanks again

Occultation Recordings