Natural Instinct (1995)

This is a collection of short instrumental tracks that started life as guitar duets – I still have the original cassette demos. All the songs were recorded over a two-week period in July / August of 1994 and were recorded and mixed using a Fostex R-8 Reel to Reel recorder and mixer combo. That was a nice little machine. As a result, the recordings are of high quality, though subject to the usual caveats of analog tape: occasional noise, pops and clicks! Where possible I have cleaned up the worst offenders but not so much that it destroys the vibe.

I’ve always had a soft spot for this album: I think the songs are uniformly very good with a few that are real standouts. Just Strings, Elizabeth’s Dream and Tranquil Obsessions are my favourites.

It’s an entirely instrumental affair with the songs being relatively short and snappy. Without exception, each song is super melodic and hummable. Looking back, one could consider this a demo album, but I feel that it does stand up quite well today: even the drums don’t sound half bad!

Looking over my track sheets, Reels 32 through 34 (4 songs per reel!), reveals that aside from the recording hardware, the entire album was created with the following:

  • Fender Strat and Ovation Pinnacle guitars + MG510 Midi Guitar (for bass duties!)
  • Korg 01w/FD Workstation (every keyboard part!)
  • Marshall 8240 Stereo Guitar Amp. This was a great little amp and saw a lot of gigs back then!
  • Shure SM-58 Mic (for the Guitar). Yes, really!
  • Boss SE-50 Effects unit. This was used for chorus effects on the Ovation

This is a fun listen, with some great tunes that I hope you enjoy revisiting or discovering for the first time.

Release Info

LabelCat #YearFormatBuy
Proximity RecordsESDD202105077th May 2021DigitalBuy Now
Proximity RecordsESDDL 0728th Jan 2013DigitalBuy Now
Proximity RecordsESDD 072007MP3Deleted
Proximity RecordsESCD 071999CD-RSold Out
Proximity RecordsESA 71995CassetteSold Out

Tracks

  1. Artificial Synthesis (4.14)
  2. First Of The First (4.42)
  3. Parallel Hearts (2.38)
  4. Tranquil Obsessions (5.12)
  5. Seventh Time Round (3.47)
  6. Mood # 1 (5.10)
  7. Natural Instinct (4.58)
  8. Complications (4.58)
  9. Just Strings (2.30)
  10. Dare To Hope (5.46)
  11. Elizabeth’s Dream (3.28)
  12. One Sunday In June (4.59)

Line Up

Steven McCabe: Electric Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, MIDI Guitar, Keyboards, Programming, All compositions, Arrangements and Production

Notes

  • Recorded between July and August 1994
  • Originally Mixed and Mastered between November 1994 and January 1995
  • 2021 version remastered between April 13th and April 26th 2021 at Propinquity Studios, UK

Artwork Gallery

  • Natural Instinct CD-R Cover
  • Natural Instinct (Remaster)