1. Take the Money and Run
2. Secrets, Accusations and Charges
3. City of Turin
4. Friendly Fire
5. In Rai Don Giovanni
6. In Laos
7. Going to America
8. Fever Sticks and Bones
9. A Great Day in Kathmandu
10. Underneath the Hessian Bags
11. The Glare
12. Michael Nyman - Songs for Tony
Running Time: 53 Minutes.
McAlmont and Nyman: The Glare
Michael Nyman and David McAlmont first met at the Freud Museum in London
in the summer of 2000. They had both been invited to the launch of
Nose Book: Representations of the Nose in Literature and the Arts by the author
Victoria De Rijke. David had been a student of Victoria’s at Middlesex
Polytechnic and the score of Michael's Nose-List Song(1985) was
included in the book.
Michael and David talked and discovered that they were signed to the same
record label, Virgin, at the time. Years before, David had become
'utterly entranced' by Nyman's soundtrack to Peter Greenaway’s film
The Cook, the Thief, his Wife and her Lover and soon after he acquired
the box set of Nyman's soundtracks became a huge fan.
In the years following the Nose/ Freud meeting it was often mentioned on
the grapevine that Michael might be interested in working with David but
this was all hearsay until 2007 when David, in a state of creative frustration,
decided to join Facebook. Nyman contacted him within a week. They recollected
their first encounter and quickly began plotting a collaboration.
Michael mentioned that he was totally unable to write his own song texts and
David realised that he had become bored with 'the navel-gazing futility of
writing love songs about his own feelings' and at 40 wanted to create something
more worthwhile with his lyric writing
At this point Géricault’s painting The Raft of the Medusa emerged as a subject
of interest to both musicians as David indicated that he had become fascinated
with the life of the 19th century French painter - especially his determination
to create documentary canvases based on contemporary life: battle-field injury,
asylum inmates and shipwreck memoirs.
But this project was soon replaced by the current project where David wrote new songs
based on contemporary news stories over pre-existing Nyman compositions.
McAlmont's subject matter explores pertinent subjects as varied as 21st
century piracy (Going to America), trafficked prostitution in Europe (City of Turin),
sexually-charged world leaders (In Rai Don Giovanni),
assisted suicide (Friendly Fire), reality television (The Glare),
African orphan migration (Fever Sticks and Bones),
banking errors (Take the Money and Run)and drug mules (In Laos).
David felt strongly that the songs were most effective if written from the
first person point of view of the individual characters discovered in the
researched reports to create an emotional engagement with the subjects that
is lost by the time their stories emerge in the glare of the 24 hour news media.
This process of course caused initial concern for McAlmont because he was taking
already brilliant compositions, adding to and adjusting them. But fortunately,
Michael Nyman was delighted with the result.