Lloyd Cole aims to cause a commotion with his first band for 10 years and a new album which was financed by 1000 members of his fan club.

The singer has formed The Small Ensemble and brings his group to the Old Fruitmarket in Glasgow on October 26 to perform songs from Broken Record released in September.

“I never wanted to make records alone but ended up spending much of the 2000s sitting in a studio with a computer or touring with a suitcase and two guitars,” said Lloyd, 49.

“My new songs demanded a band and it became apparent just how much more fun it is to work with other musicians. Broken Record is a full band album recorded on tape in the old-fashioned way.”

Lloyd invited 1000 fans – via his website – to pay $45 for a deluxe edition of Broken Record before it was recorded.

“I’m a musician and also a record shop owner. I’m too old and curmudgeonly to be working with record companies I don’t like,” he said. “I asked 1000 very forward-thinking folk to pay $45 before they’d heard a single track. I raised enough money for the project. Feedback has been good.”

Lloyd has been rehearsing in his home in Massachusetts with The Small Ensemble – mandolin player Mark Schwaber and banjo player Matt Cullen. It’s his first band since The Negatives in 2000, apart from a brief return of The Commotions in 2004 to celebrate the 20th anniversary of their debut album, Rattlesnakes.

“That was great fun but reminded me of all the reasons I didn’t want to be in a band. I don’t like travelling on a tour bus with a bunch of roadies,” said Lloyd.

“The Small Ensemble have a repertoire of 40 songs and can play nearly all of Rattlesnakes. Maybe we’ll do an acoustic version at some stage.”

Lloyd’s gig at the Old Fruitmarket will bring back memories.

In 1982, his parents ran Killermont Golf Club in Glasgow and he relocated to the city. While studying at Glasgow University, he got a summer job at the original fruit market but only lasted 48 hours.

“I could get all the work I wanted behind the bar at the club but wanted a proper job. One of the members owned a vegetable suppliers and hired me,” he recalled.

“I loaded sacks of potatoes on to lorries. I lasted two days. My legs couldn’t take it. It was a turning point. I thought, I’ve got to find another way of making a living.”

Lloyd has also formed a band, Codger, with teenage sons William and Frank.

“We only play rock – Back In Black by AC/DC, Ace Of Spades by Motorhead, School’s Out by Alice Cooper and Mama We’re All Crazee Now by Slade,” he said.

“As soon as we can get eight songs together we’ll open for which ever band will have us.”

Link to original article online

Publication: Daily Record

Publication date: 25/07/10