Was recorded for the movie “Streets of Fire” and was done at castle studios just outside Edinburgh. I asked Mark to go in and do a drum track based on a thing he had been jamming. The song was then built around that. Lyrically the subject matter is a kind of doomsday scenario, sort of in the spirit of the movie. — Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives & Rarities Liner notes.
All Go Together
Almost didn’t make the album as Briggs wasn’t keen on it. We opened our set with it and it became a fans favourite, although I must admit preferring the acoustic version that we did. – Liner notes for US Master Edition.
The first single from the album, Mark still wasn’t in the band and Simon Phillips was unavailable for the video Shoot Martin Chambers from the Pretenders fills in for the video shoot only.
Angle Park “is about the feelings I have on mental institutions” – Stuart Adamson (Smash Hits 1983).
This comes from the first Big Country when Pete Wishart (now with Runrig), Alan Wishart (bass) and Clive Parker (Drums) were playing in our “wall of sound” band. This is the band that got thrown off the Alice Cooper tour for Being too weird. This is the version done with
Tony and Mark and I think it was used in the movie “Against All Odds” — Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives & Rarities Liner notes.
Blue on a Green Planet (Cool Version)
I think this is the demo version of this song done at House in the Woods. We did two versions of this, one a slow grind replete with vocal “brass” section, the other an up-tempo “punk rock” version. — Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives & Rarities Liner notes.
‘The Buffalo Skinners`] was the track that never made the album. Big Country used to do this quite a lot, use The title for the album whilst not including it. The Crossing was a prime example of this. Again this version has Drum machine on it. I was getting into different guitar tunings at the time and I was trying to get a Ry Cooder vibe on the song. I also had 2nd engineer Nigel Goodrich play guitar on this also. - Liner notes for US Master Edition.
“Some period in our dim and distant past there was this guy working away in a laboratory, and he discovered this Weird shit.. He let this go and he targeted it at the people who you were most afraid of.” — Stuart Adamson, in concert, Germany, 1993. This song was only played a few times on the North American tour and I thought would have been a great opening. Unfortunately there were too many guitar and keyboard overdubs on the album that it was very difficult to replicate live. – Liner notes for US Master Edition.
Come Back to Me
“…this song is all about a woman who has lost someone near and dear to her.” — Stuart Adamson, BBC Live In Concert.
Dead on Arrival
I can’t remember this at all. I can’t think whether this is Bruce’s demo or if I played on it. Help!!! Extra format track (Chipping Norton). Unfinished song, I thought it sounded like a heavy metal track (says Bruce). — Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives & Rarities Liner notes.
Driving to Damascus
“I was writing a contemporary take on Paul’s vision of Christ on the road to Damascus, but with a guy driving a Bus load of tourists.” — Stuart Adamson, reply to a post on the Official Big Country Web Site bulletin board.
Dust on the Road
“I wrote it with a friend of mine here in Nashville, Christie Siemens. I played it to the guys and they loved it, so we Rattled off a version.” — Stuart Adamson, reply to a post on the Official Big Country Web Site bulletin board.
East of Eden
“One of the pieces I’m most satisfied with.” — Stuart Adamson, Melody Maker interview, March 26, 1990.
Eastworld” was originally recorded at REL studios in Edinburgh. Stuart and I programmed the drums which really Was a straight lift from The Glitter bands ‘Angel Face’? Simon Phillips was going to replace the drum machine But for some reason the song was overlooked and left on the shelf for a while. I think it ended up being the B Side for ‘Alone’ – Liner notes for US Master Edition.
Flag of Nations (Swimming)
Once again I don’t know how Tony and Mark got credited in fact I don’t even think that Chris Thomas is the Producer. I’m pretty sure this was done by Bruce and me, messing around with John Leckie’s sequencer When we were doing some tracks with him. The bass part ended up as the bass part for 1000 stars. A lot of The early Big Country songs I wrote on the bass and a really naff drum machine — Stuart Adamson, RestlessNatives & Rarities Liner notes.
God’s Great Mistake (alternate version)
This was done at Chapel Studios on the same session as “Normal.” I love to take melodies from folk music I Grew up listening to and put them to a really heavy and dark guitar sounds. It’s always very evocative to me and Usually pushes me into ‘apocalyptic’ lyric mode as evidenced here. — Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives & Rarities Liner notes.
Hold the Heart
“It was the third song that I wrote for the LP. I remember thinking that I wanted to write a very ballady song, Something that people would never think of as a Big Country song, a very direct boy/girl lost and found song.” — Stuart Adamson, interview.
I’m Only Waiting
The Chapel demos once again .Another nearly song I think. This was a pretty confusing time for us, with Conflicting signals being sent from the record company and us trying to find ourselves after all the Peace in Our Time stuff. I think this song reflects a lot of that indecision musically and lyrically. — Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives & Rarities Liner notes.
King of Emotion
“I grew up playing a lot of R&B music, and I wanted to do a very R&B type song. And I like the ‘nah-nah-nahs.’ I Always wanted a song with those in.”— Stuart Adamson, Melody Maker interview, March 26, 1990.
Kiss the Girl Goodbye
This was written during the first demos we did at “House in the Woods” when Pat was playing with us, the Same demos as “We’re Not In Kansas” and “Ships” I think. This is the version done with Mark drumming at “Rockfield” for “No Place like Home”. I think this comes close to being a classic but the verse and lyrics need Work. I wrote the song about desperate situations inspiring drastic actions, maybe I should have taken.The lyrics advice and tried to do something more with it. — Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives & Rarities Liner notes.
The Longest Day
This track was recorded at Windmill Lane, Dublin during a European tour circa 1985. Originally for a film by the Same name, but I seem to remember we were not comfortable with the film’s subject matter. The chorus, melody and chorus were later to be incorporated into Thirteen Valleys —Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives & Rarities Liner notes.
Long Way Home
“This is a song about trying to find yourself.” — Stuart Adamson, in concert, Germany, 1993. This featured in our live set a lot; we changed the time signature when we played it acoustically – Liner notes for US Master Edition.
Inspired by the little-known Harry Tracey film about the last old-style outlaw in America. “He had a great sense of his own destiny;
he knew he was a man out of his time.” — Stuart
Adamson, Melody Maker interview, March 26, 1990.
Made in Heaven
Was written for the movie of the same name. Bruce and I originally recorded it with a drum machine at R.E.L. and Mark and Tony played on it later. I can’t for the life of me remember the name of the girl who sung on it. I Don’t think it was used in the movie, this is a
demo and I think it needs tightening up. — Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives & Rarities Liner notes.
Never Take Your Place
Another survivor from the REL sessions without aid of a drummer. This was another great song that Stuart came Up with out of the blue. We never played this song live with Big Country but I play it every night on tour along With ‘Eastworld’ with Mark in our new band “The Casbah Club”. I sometimes feel along with a lot of fans that some of our B sides were little gems that sometimes got forgotten or weren’t developed properly. – Liner notes for US Master Edition.
Originally from a bunch of demos at Chapel Studios in Lincolnshire. Bruce was fooling around while I was writingLyrics and came up with a really cool lick. I think I then added vocals at House in the Woods and this is that version. The lyrics came from New York Times piece about small town America, although it could be Anywhere, the lifestyles are so similar. — Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives & Rarities liner notes.
Not Waving but Drowning
Title lifted straight from a Stevie Smith poem
because I liked the images of someone appearing in control but in Reality floundering. This came from the same demos as “Over the Border” and I think it’s another of those “close but no cigar” songs. I think during this period a lot of people didn’t want us to be the Big Country we were andMaybe we were trying to be something that wasn’t us. — Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives & Rarities liner notes.
One Great Thing
I wanted to write a very anathematic pop song. If you had to choose one great thing in your life, what would it be?” — Stuart Adamson, Melody Maker interview, March 26, 1990
The One I Love
It was originally demoed in my home studio in Charlestown. Basically it was a case of me having the intro and the verse worked out and Stuart having the chorus and the middle 8 worked out. A lot of BC songs were bolted together and this song is a prime example. – Liner notes for US Master Edition.
On the Shore
Another b-side recorded at R.E.L. This time during the period Josh Phillips Gorse was playing with us. Tony had a cool bass piece and I just jammed along on top of it. It’s a nice evocative little piece. — Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives & Rarities Liner notes.
Over the Border
Was one of the tracks we came up with during the period of inactivity between leaving Mercury in the U.S.A.? And going to Warners.
It started out as a twelve string piece that Bruce had and I built it into the chorus. This is One of those tracks (like a lot on this album) that really still needs work to become a song. This is actually a Demo recorded at R.E.L. in Edinburgh. The song is about how you can never run from yourself. — Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives & Rarities Liner notes This song was originally a song I wrote and brought to the group. It was similar to the endresult but better due to the mandolin line and Stuart’s lyrical idea. I was very keen for it to be a hybrid between the BC sound that we Had established and Zepplin, hence the dark heaviness. I am glad that you guys are responding favourably to This track as it is one of my favourites and a direction I would have liked to explore. - Tony Butler, on the Official Big Country Website message board.
Pass Me By
Now I think this andthe previous track came from a session at chapel studios out in Lincoln. At the time we were Putting songs together for the No Place Like Home album and I’m pretty sure it’s Pat Ahern playing on these tracks. I’m completely blank about the lyrics on this. — Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives & Rarities Liner notes.
Peace in Our Time
Very Sixties feel protest song, naïve but I did it anyway.” — Stuart Adamson, Melody Maker interview, March 26, 1990.
Pink Marshmallow Moon
Has anyone here ever been blindly and madly in love? This is a song about being like that.” — Stuart Adamson, in concert,
Germany, 1993. Great title, sound like the title to a Prince Song, great song to play live and again a fan favourite – Liner notes to US Master Edition.
Another track from the R.E.L demos done for ‘Peace in Our Time’. I can’t remember too much of what it’s about But I think parts of it ended up in other songs. The fog of time. — Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives & Rarities Liner notes.
Question: Back to the
LP [The Seer]. “The Red Fox,” listening to the lyrics of that it seems to be about an underground resistance fighter. Stuart Adamson: What it
says is that struggle is right if the frustration is clear enough. — Stuart Adamson,answering an interview question from the “Hold the Heart” interview.
“Question: Why “Remembrance Day” for a starting point for a song? Stuart Adamson: I think because it’s quite a potent image of learning from things gone past. This is the underlying theme and the key that the whole album revolves around. As such, it was a very potent phrase to use in a song and obviously the whole song just turns around the two words. I don’t really like pinning myself down too much until maybe this time in two year time, then maybe I’ll tell you, is that how it was. It revolves around the old T (?) stuff. ” — Stuart Adamson, Answering an
interview question from the “Hold the Heart” interview.
Return to the Two Headed King
Was written during the “NPLH” demo period with Pat drumming. I think the best song out of this bunch was “You? Me and the Truth” which went on the record. This, another ‘almost’ song, which Mercury actually cut slowly on The record (Nice job guys). It’s about two-faced leaders. — Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives & Rarities lLner notes.
River of Hope
“Sometimes the humanrace is given absolutely marvellous gifts, and we take those gifts and squanderthem just because we are human beings. This is all about that.” — Stuart Adamson, BBC Live In Concert.
“It’s certainly harder than the Peace in Our Time stuff. I wanted to create a blues-come-Mission type of feel, like a Gospel song, but not
done totally seriously. I like the song, and it’s great to have played some bloody lead guitar on a record again, just for the sheer joy of playing it” — Stuart Adamson, Melody Maker interview, March 26, 1990.
The Seer (full version)
We’d like to do something now which is all about being proud of who you are and what you are about. I think Everyone should be what. Songs about things which have been, things which are happening now, and things which are still to happen” — Stuart Adamson, BBC Live in Concert.
The Selling of America
Originally Tony’s song. This song has the best groove on the album as far as I’m concerned unfortunately didn’t Make the live set. – Liner notes
for US Master Edition.
The song was originally called Broken Man. I demoed original music with Manny Charlton from Nazareth Engineering. — Liner notes for US Master Edition.
Again from the NPLH album. Originally recorded as a piano and string quartet piece, again we decided to give this the loud guitar treatment. – liner notes for US Master Edition “This is a song about me being the happy-go-lucky-go chap that I am, and about being able to see your way through a bad time with the help of people around you.” —Stuart Adamson, in concert, Germany, 1993.
Song of the South
Was done at the power plant with Robin Millar producing. Robin is one of the nicest people I have ever worked With and has remained a
source of good advice and inspiration. The song is about apartheid and I kind of liked The idea of using a Disney title for it to show how the media exploit real suffering for ratings. — Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives & Rarities Liner notes.
Trouble the Waters
Photos at right are of the victims of the incidents most-likely described in “Trouble the Waters” (from top to Bottom): James Byrd (murdered in Texas, apparently because he was an African-American), Matthew Shepherd (Murdered in Wyoming, apparently because he was homosexual), and Natalie Brooks, Paige Ann Herring, and Stephanie Johnson, all 12, and Brittheny R. Varner, 11., teacher Shannon Wright, 32 (all murdered at a school in Jonesboro, Arkansas).
We’re Not in Kansas
Originally recorded on the No Place like Home album. We heaved up this version at the request of Chris Briggs. The NPLH version was more
acoustic sounding while this version has a definite ‘Who’ element to it. – Liner Notes for US Master Edition.
What Are You Working For
When I was growing up, the circumstances that I grew up in I was expected to know my place and keep My mouth shut and is a
nice good little boy and pay my taxes and work for someone else. ??? To that.” — Stuart Adamson, in concert, Germany, 1993. great
opening riff from Stuart. This album is our heaviest by far in terms of Distorted guitar tones. – Liner notes for US Master Edition Demo version (from “www. bigcountry.co.uk”) is titled “What are we working for”.
When a Drum Beats
I like the guitar intro no this and I’m going to nick it for something else. We were demoing a lot of tracks at R.E.L. at this time and maybe we should have developed some of them a bit further. The lyric is about refusing to get caught up in jingoism and misplaced patriotism. — Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives & Rarities Liner notes.
This piece was actually written and routine’s in the studio so it wasn’t rehearsed enough and I think it kind Of suffered because of this. – Liner
notes for US Master Edition.
Bruce and I recorded these ourselves at Palladium in Edinburgh as a b-side but this time I actually think we got a great song. The bass, bass drum and snare were played on a synch at separate times, in fact I think Bruce did the bass drum and I did the snare. Thrown away on a b-side I think. — Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives & Rarities Liner notes.
World on Fire
Tony’s song done at Chipping Norton and basically I just turned the guitar up and played along. Done during Another burst of “let’s fill
up those formats” recording. — Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives & Rarities Liner notes.