Baby Steps

by The Rhys Anslow Project

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about

'Baby Steps’ is my debut album. Its creation took place over a 17 month period of my life. It’s title is a symbolism of the first musical steps covered during that period (as well as before). It is a product of the lessons learn't from those steps.

Every track includes notes on the song that explain the story and narrative behind the music.

This album has been set to 'Pay what you think it's worth'.
I'm a firm believer that music (or as it's more commonly known - audio) has no innate value.
Value is given to music completely by the audience, its worth born of the listener.
As a representation of this, I've happily set it to be sold in this medium. The value, the price of this album will not me set by me, it wont be set by a trend, it will be set by you and you alone.

If you have no idea of its worth initially then please feel entitled to download this for free. Then, once you have had a few listens, absorbed the music, its message, you will have assigned it a value. If that value means little to you then don't worry with paying anything. If you find that the music touches you or relates with you in anyway, feel free to express that worth in any form you think is appropriate. You are a mature human being and will know how best to express that value.

I must thank you for showing any interest you have in this album. The fact that you have found and are currently viewing my creations really means a lot to me. Thank you :)

credits

released November 21, 2011

Rhys Anslow - Songwriter

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Rhys Anslow UK

Musician and bass player of many bands and genre's over my short life, I have been given experience and opportunities that I can only be extremely greatful for.
In the quest of becoming a better musician I've set up my own project as a platform for my own music.
Being a project, I aim to and hope it brings many different musical genre's and experiences for the beautiful people who listen to it
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Track Name: Night on Wine Street
For all that know Swansea well, this song may ring well with you.

For those that don't -
Swansea is home to a wonderful street called 'Wind Street' which is home to a plethora of bars, clubs & restaurants. As such it's affectionately been renamed 'Wine Street' by the hordes of drunken people that visit it every weekend.

During the two years I lived in Neath (while being a student) I had quite a few trips to the legendary Wine Street &, as a result, have a quite a few 'interesting' memories about the place.

I wrote this song after coming home from visiting friends in Swansea once I had moved to Cardiff. Nostalgia of those times had a hold on my mind during this writing session & I had to dedicate this song to those memories.

Each section of the song owes to the different sections that a normal night out on Wine street would bring. I wont tell you them all (that gives us something to discuss in person ;P) but in regards to the 'fast' maybe even 'chaotic' slap bass section, I will tell you that as of the beginning of this year Wind Street was announced as being -
1) The third most violent street in the UK
&
2) The second highest street in the UK to have submitted incident reports.

Enjoy!
Track Name: Two Minutes Hate
The idea for this song came from a tune written by my first 'real' band the ‘Shoplifters’.

We were a self professed 'left wing band' who wrote socialist songs powered by our lead singer James Farror. Our song ‘Two Minutes Hate’ was (in my opinion) one of our best songs, I loved it.

For anyone who doesn't know what 'Two Minutes Hate' is, please please go and pick up a copy of '1984'.

I was messing about with the chord progression of that song during the writing period of this album when this tune started to come together.
The song doesn’t really sound a lot like what the full indie band version did, but I kept the name in honour of the meaning within the song as well as the good first experiences of band life I had in the 'Shoplifters'.
Track Name: Epitaph
This song was written over a period of four years.

I wrote the first riff upon receiving my first six string bass when I was seventeen. I was very much into the whole 'technical' side of playing at that age & wanted to show off my 'skills'. Alas, the riff never made it past being an ego trip & got put to one side.

About a year & and half later I upgraded & received a seven string bass. At this time I picked up the riff again and expanded it.
I *think* I was a little bit more musically minded by then & the second riff, which I then wrote, became more focused on expanding the original riff more so than being even more of a 'tapping fest'. However, at some point, I put the song to one side again.

By the time I came to writing this album I really wanted to pick the song back up & finish it off once and for all, but by this time I had switched back to a five string bass.
I did a bit of rearranging with notes, slowed it down a bit & added a new riff to complete the instrumental & make it playable on a five string.

I decided on calling it 'Epitaph' as a representation of the fact that this song was written at various periods in my life, & that each period (each riff) was a representation of a completely different musician & state of mind. Therefore, the riffs in this song are a sort of epitaph to each of those persona's, as well as their development.
Track Name: Behind Closed Doors
Have you ever had to let go of two humans who you've considered your closest & most trusted friends & know it was completely the right thing to do? It's a horrifying process that brushes with insanity. I dealt with it via the only outlet I had.

'Behind Closed Doors' comes in two parts, one half a poem which acts as the words I could never say, the other half the song which acts as a soundtrack to the deepest sorrow & pain in my heart.

(It's worth noting that i'm not a proficient writer & never will be. This poem is just pure expression, nothing more or less)

- Behind Closed Doors -

I use to have a friend,
we stood side by side,
grew up with each other,
we shared every experience,
we shared all our joy,
I use to have a friend.

I use to have a friend,
till capital was just too much a lure,
for my friendship could not contend with a pawn and a two face troll.
For my friendship was not worth honesty, a waste of time the discussion we had.
I use to have a friend.

I use to have a friend,
looked up to him in ways,
a man to emulate, a role model to display.
A companion to help thrive in the dark hours,
a companion who I would happily give all my hours.
I use to have a friend.

I use to have a friend,
before the prize became so grand that walking over my corpse was only a minor issue compared with standing in my spot.
For two weeks of silence did pass till my friend sent his plea,
just to compare music a business, a business decision me.
I use to have a friend.

An apology i'm meant to accept regardless of all the wrong.
I have to accept liars into my arms despite all they have done.
Once again, despite all they have done,
It's my fault,
It's my ego,
that's the problem.

Am I dreaming madness?
Can I plead insanity?
No,
This is just cold hard reality.

Audiences set with their own agenda, their own priorities.
For beneath all the hidden agenda, beneath the priorities, the lies,
I can see only two men,
One branded a liar & a coward, the other wallowing in a given demise.

What would you have me do?

Would you have me throw away my dignity and self respect?
Would you have me sleep with the wolves now that i've lost all my trust?

For honesties sake I just want some respect,
for personal decisions,
for feelings beset.
A realisation that some wounds can not be undone,
that the loss of two loves on my behalf is a large burden.

For now all I can do is sit back and hope that my self respect will be spared just this once,
that parties will pull their heads out of the sand and walk forward, not backwards.
To see forever as a blank canvas,
a canvas where only we can provide the colour,
because if we let every problem bring us down, when issues arise to bury our heads in the ground, then forever will remain colourless.

I preserve not just for the colour of you and me,
I preserve to enrich humanity.
Track Name: Emily
Not a lot of people truly know about or how to deal with depression. It’s not their fault, depression is really a subject that can only be understood with experience, but I think I can speak for everyone who’s been through it when I say that they’d never wish it on any human.

Without needlessly going into too much detail, I think I can safely call the summer of 2008 the ‘darkest’ part of my short life, a time or state of mind I never wish to return back to.

The main riff for this song was written in this time. I messed around with it quite a few times, I even wrote lyrics to it, but never did anything with it, not sure how to release it or how it would be taken by the outside world.
However, recent times have made me view the tune in a different light. Yes – it is a reflection of how I was in the world at that time, but it is also a monument to how I came through that time, a monument to an appreciation of the world around me that I really don’t believe I would have otherwise. A monument to what I have achieved since.

The biggest meaning of this song is that it is a monument to the people that helped me in that time, with special thanks to my brother and friend at the time. The world is full of beautiful people & small good deeds which aren't even noticed. We're very privileged to be alive on this planet, me & you have overtaken the untold trillions of potential humans who could have been born, I'm glad I realise this.
Track Name: Thank You (live recording)
This song was written during a week spent entirely at a friends house due to his parents having gone away.

Due to having the free house, pretty much every night turned into a scene of debating, documentary watching and just general enjoyment until the early hours of the morning, and it got me thinking – thinking about just how lucky I am to have EVERYTHING that I do in my life, be it the musical equipment I own, the technology I have or the friends I have been lucky enough to find, I’m so lucky to have them all and I really don’t deserve to have any of it.

This is what this song is about, a song dedicated to saying thank you for everything I’m so so lucky to have (Steve Lawson wrote an album on the subject called ‘Grace And Gratitude‘, I heavily recommend you listen to it)
Track Name: Acid Dance
Acid Dance is the only song from the album that doesn't have a proper narrative.

It's slow groove gives me the feeling of dinner parties with dancing, only with solo bass as the background music, making the dancing kinda wierd. So, kinda acid influenced dancing ;).
Track Name: Funk Dunk
Funk Dunk is all about the raw joy of being a musician. How much pleasure & fulfilment something so simple as strumming on a guitar alone can be, to having something so meaningful in your life that you can communicate & relate to with so many other creative human beings.

Being a creative human being has given so much to my existence I cant communicate it.
I stumbled into this life completely by accident, yet I owe so much of myself to it.
Track Name: Just sit back and relax
To put it bluntly, my 20 year old self had a very low tolerance to perceived 'bullshit'.

At the time, this left my temper rather frequently frayed. If I kept letting this happen I was pretty surely going to end up with either high blood pressure or in an early grave. So, this songs meaning was as much of a message to me as it is to anyone else.

There’s so much beauty and so many wonderful people in this world. Cut the bullshit out of your life, throw it away by any means you can (you wont be needing it) and get out and just enjoy the short time we have on this planet. Once it’s gone it’s gone, I'm sure none of us want to waste it.
Track Name: Breathe Easy
Breathe Easy is a song about love.

For me, love is an umbrella term for the deep connections/relationships that are essential for a human's stability. A term so important to me that i've written a song about it on each of my releases.

Love is a journey. It has its ups and downs (thats only natural), but our sentience allows us to perceive more, to understand more. Connection completes us, feeds us, gives us a understanding unknown to so many species.

Saviour it yet indulge in it's pleasure. Missing out on its experience would be a fate not worth living.