Tuesday, May 22, 2012

SMACM006 Greenisforturbo - Lunchbox for a Dream

This is a pretty big one. The super fan-out over the 6th release on SMACM. Greenisforturbo's "Lunchbox for a dream" is a small milestone for us - it's the first full length album released on our little label that has, till now, been an all EPs affair.

I have a mountain of work I need to get back to, so I'll try keep this brief. I'll skip out on all the history. My whirlwind romance with GIFT's music. It started with tears when I saw the band for the first time in the Bohemian, as they played this song (without the gummy bear bits). And it ended with more tears when the band bowed out with a final show at Sunningdales in 2008.
There were a few more tears shed watching this band in between those first and last shows. They were all the happy kind. Being moved that profoundly by performances isn't something that happens to me very often. GIFT join Mogwai and Los Campesinos on a teeny tiny list of bands that have made it happen. What's strange is GIFT were such an unlikely bunch of tear-jerkers. Their music (while bitter-sweet at times) was almost always injected with a large helping of sugar-coated fun. I guess the reasoning behind it is that their music really resonated with me deeply. There was always something incredibly sincere about the whole thing. Really heartfelt. A quality, all too often, totally absent from the performances of South African bands. Even if they were playing a Grandaddy or Trail of Dead cover this rare sincerity shone through. It's probably this same sincerity that let 4 guys get away with combining spaced post-rock sounds and cutesy power-pop ones; influences that should have been mortal enemies, but in GIFT's case made the best of friends.

But yeah, I'm getting sidetracked. In short, Greenisforturbo held a very very special place in my heart and were a part of many fond memories that I will always carry with me.
Since calling it quits back in 08, the band literally split up. Matt (vox & guitar) moved to Cape Town, Rod (drums) went to live in the UK while Colin (keys) and Cameron (bass & backing vocals) stayed put. Surprisingly, it was only one they were strewn across the globe like this that the band recorded their debut/ final album. Done in sessions between Pretoria, Johannesburg, Cape Town and Brighton, Lunchbox for a Dream is an album that, surely, had the odds stacked high up against it ever being completed. But GIFT beat the odds and today I'm able to share their triumph with you.
For the physical release of the album, we really went all out. As always, this SMACM release is freely available to download, but for the people that wanted a real, tangible artifact to keep these songs in, we went totally over-board. We've released special and deluxe editions of the album, both packaged in little green lunchboxes.
The special edition lunchbox contains a copy of the album (with art by the band's own Matthew Lowry), a micro-zine, a random artifact from the band's history (see: badges), one small plastic dinosaur and some sparkly green stuff. These are hand-numbered and limited to 50.
The deluxe edition has all the same stuff as the special edition. On top of that, the deluxe lunchbox contains additional dinos & 1 premium toy (batteries included). Aaaaand then there's the bonus DVD, which contains more than 3Gb of GIFT-history. We've pretty obsessively collected any possible surviving media relating to the band to put this together. There are alternate mixes of album tracks, b-sides, demos and live recordings, photographs documenting various shows and other fun times, poster designs for almost every gig the band played, merch designs, wallpapers and miscellaneous promotional artworks. Oh, and we threw in one magical green feather into these boxes. As a real collector's piece these hand-numbered bad-boys have been limited to a run of 10.
Anyone who might want one of these puppies, drop me a line/ comment/ mail. 

For everyone else: