Gordon and Tom were glass collecting staff at the Hacienda in the mid-80s when they formed the pre-Inspirals Manchester Indie band Too Much Texas. After a few years of supporting the likes of New Order, The Beloved, The House of Love and The Pastels, as well as recording a Peel session at the famous BBC Maida Vale studios, Tom jumped ship onto the Inspirals juggernaut whilst TMT continued on to record a track on the Ugly Man released Bananas compilation with new singer Lee Severin.
Spring forward to post-pandemic 2021, Tom met up with Gordon who was newly mourning the recent passing of his sister Angela and Father, Ian. Tom suggested marking his friend’s 60th birthday in January 2023 by recording a memorial album, and that’s what we have here in ‘Decades’. One song for each of the decades of Gordon’s life.
The pair set about recruiting Gordon’s son Angus, to play bass and synthesiser. Local Oxford multi-instrumentalist Ben Heaney was drafted in to play violin, electric violin and piano on the last track. Scott Bearman-Brown was found via a Facebook post, calling out for Oxford-based percussionists to play on two tracks.
The six songs were recorded and mixed by Stuart Jones in ex-Fairport’s charming rural Woodworm studios, in St Michael near Banbury throughout Summer and Autumn 2022. The same studio where Radiohead cut their teeth and George Harrison also recorded material.
‘Decades’ features two kinds of songs, the plaintive memorials of ‘Ian’, dedicated to Gordon’s father who became deaf on a National Service rifle range as an instructor, but retained a tolerance to the challenges of both his children and grandchildren throughout his life. ‘Angela’ is a meditation on the passing of Gordon’s sister, an artist, who coincidently Tom was in a class with at Larkmead School as a teenager.
The other songs are more mischievous, ‘Document 6’ is a deceptively happy-sounding song which really describes a serial killer incarnating his human prey, the chorus warning that “it’s Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter outside”, ‘Tiny Shadow of Love’ is a song about an imaginary love triangle. ‘Killing Kittens’ is a song about esotericism, as a listener, you will either know what the song is referring to or have to find out.
The closer is ‘When Ali Came to Abingdon’ a pub singalong folk song detailing various events that did might or definitely didn’t happen when Muhammad Ali visited Abingdon Gordon’s Hometown in 1972 and 1987.
‘Decades’ is being launched at Gordon Mackay’s 60th birthday celebrations on Friday 20th of January 2023 at a hometown show at the Old Anchor Inn, 1 St Helen Wharf Abingdon OX14 5EN.
The album will be promoted at a string of Tom Hingley solo shows throughout 2023:
14.1.2023 Dulcie’s Cocktails/Music Bar, 1 Market Street Hednesfield Staffordshire WS12 1AY
10.2.2023 Wrexham Parish 21 Town Hill Wrexham LL13 8NA
3.3.2023 with the Lovers AATMA 1st Floor 14-16 Faraday Street Manchester M11BE
4.3.2023 with the Lovers 100 Club Century House 100 Oxford Street London W1D1LL
27.3.2023 Hanbury Arms Banbury OX16 1ER