“Therapy” is the ninth studio album by The New Mastersounds, the now multi-national funk band originally from Leeds/England. With a new perspective in sound and vision, Eddie Roberts (Guitar), Simon Allen (Drums), Joe Tatton (Keyboards) and Pete Shand (Bass) recorded 12 fresh tracks in Denver/Colorado USA, aiming for a forward thinking sound mixing vintage funk with raw soul, smart jazz and original disco.
“Music and the creation of music has always been my therapy,” says Eddie Roberts. “It has been a way of working through ideas, feelings, frustrations. In creating music, especially instrumental music, it is an incredible outlet for pent-up emotions. People often tell me how much energy they draw from our music, often in a therapeutic way. I find the idea incredible that from my feelings, turned into music, that same music then generates feelings in the listener. It is an exchange much like the physics of music itself: from a string vibration into an electrical signal, and back from electrical signal into vibrating sound waves. I hope that this album will be as therapeutic and valuable to the listener as it was to me creating it.”
On “Therapy” The New Mastersounds introduce a couple of new faces. “I met Kim Dawson on Jam Cruise last year when she performed as part of my 'super jam'. We didn't have time to get to know each other at that point, but subsequently through various shows and social situations in Denver, where she lives, we got to know each other well and I felt that she understood and shared my vision of music. ‘I Want You To Stay' was a lyrical sketch I had and she helped and co-wrote with me to make some sense of what I was trying to say. 'Soul Sista' was a poem she had written recently and, as the backing track was inspired by the Lyn Collins/James Brown track … I thought her message was a very appropriate fit. Ryan Zoidis has been a friend for a few years through festivals and musical collaborations performing with Lettuce. When ‘Slow Down’ called for a Maceo-esque solo he was the obvious choice and nailed it!”
The New Mastersounds tried a few cover versions over the years, but for “Therapy” the choice is special. “At the end of the recording session we decided we wanted to record a cover version of a current song and we put it to our Facebook friends for suggestions. After we had checked out a few initial suggestions thankfully someone suggested ‘Treasure’. I also realized that Bruno Mars is performing at the Super Bowl interval 2014 and thought it would be a good tie-in as our album will be released around the same time. It's a very well written song and reminiscent of a Stevie Wonder vibe. We tried to do a version that would sound like George Benson was covering it in 1974!”
“WWIII (and how to avoid it)” is another key track for the album. “The background to ‘WWIII’ is that we arrived at the studio in Denver on the morning the US Congress was about to vote on whether or not to strike Syria after the alleged chemical weapons attack. There was a real feeling amongst us of sadness, frustration, fear and disbelief that this strike could be imminent despite pretty much the whole world being against it. Subconsciously these emotions came out in the recording of this tune which, before we recorded it, had no title. Musically it reminded me a bit of ‘Cease the Bombing' by Grant Green, an anti-Vietnam-war statement. The doom we felt instigated the title ‘WWIII’, yet the hope we had that sense would prevail made for the footnote 'and how to avoid it'.”