Secret Symphony

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Secret Symphony

Secret Symphony is Katie’s fifth studio album , and was released on 5 March 2012. The album was recorded at Air Studios in London in collaboration with orchestrator and conductor Mike Batt.

Katie said in a statement: “This album was going to be my ‘singer’s album’. I had always wanted to do this one day; singing other people’s songs brings something out of you and your voice that isn’t perhaps where you would have gone vocally with your own material.”

She added: “It stretches you. As it happened Mike and I did write a couple of new ones, but the general idea was to find songs by great writers such as Ron Sexsmith (‘Gold In Them Hills’) and a favourite song of mine, originally recorded by Bonnie Raitt (‘Too Long At The Fair’) plus some more well-known ones like Keeping The Dream Alive.”

The lead single, Better Than a Dream, and the track “Walls of the World” were both originally recorded by Mike Batt, for the TV series The Dreamstone and his 1977 solo album Schizophonia respectively.

Tracklist:

    1. Gold In Them Hills
    2. Better Than A Dream
    3. The Bit That I Don’t Get
    4. Moonshine
    5. Forgetting All My Troubles
    6. All Over The World
    7. Nobody Knows You When You’re Down And Out
    8. The Cry Of The Lone Wolf
    9. Heartstrings
    10. The Walls Of The World
    11. Secret Symphony

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01. Gold In Them Hills

I know it doesn’t seem that way
But maybe it’s the perfect day
Even though the bills are piling
Maybe Lady Luck ain’t smiling

But if we only open our eyes
We’d see the blessings in disguise
That all the rain clouds are fountains
Though our troubles seem like mountains

There’s gold in them hills
There’s gold in them hills
So don’t lose heart
Give the day a chance to start
Every now and then life says:
Where do you think you’re going so fast?
We’re apt to think it’s cruel, but sometimes
It’s a case of cruel to be kind

And if we get up off our knees
Why then we’d see the forest for the trees
and we’d see the new sun rising
Over the hills and horizon

There’s gold in them hills
There’s gold in them hills
So don’t lose faith
Give the world a chance to say:

A word or two, my friend
There’s no telling how the day might end
We’ll never know until we see

That there’s gold in them hills
There’s gold in them hills
So don’t lose heart
Give the day a chance to start

There’s gold in them hills
There’s gold in them hills

02. Better Than A Dream

I used to dream myself
To somewhere else each night
I dreamed in color
Caused i lived in black and white
Until i chanced upon this road that led to you
I could not see
How anything could be

Better than a dream
Stranger than my wild imagination
If this is a real sensation
It’s better than a dream
Higher than the moon
Hazy like a beautiful illusion
Crazy and in confusion
And better than a dream

I used to wish
I was beyond some distant door
I knew there must be more to life
And now I’m sure
No dreams of pirate caves
Or Indian braves
Or magic carpets could
Ever be this good

Better than a dream
Stranger than my wild imagination
If this is a real sensation
It’s better than a dream
Higher than the moon
Hazy like a beautiful illusion
Crazy and in confusion
And better than a dream
And better than a dream

03. The Bit That I Don’t Get

The bit that I don’t get
It’s how it changed so fast
How it changed from we will always be together
To it will never last.
The writing on the wall
I hadn’t seen it yet
When you told me you were tired of it all
That’s the bit that I don’t get.

So call me a fool
I do!
But no longer the fool beside you
And I’m learning from the pain
Won’t be doing that again!

The bit that I don’t get
It’s how it changed so fast
How it changed from we will always be together

To it will never last.
The writing on the wall
I hadn’t seen it yet
When you told me you were tired of it all
That’s the bit that I don’t get!

People break up everyday
But I never thought
I would wake up to hear you say
Forever now means never!

The bit that I don’t get
It’s how it changed so fast
How it changed from we will always be together
To it will never last.
The writing on the wall
I hadn’t seen it yet
When you told me you were tired of it all
That’s the bit that I don’t get!

04. Moonshine

Well my eyes are closed, but my heart’s on fire
Because the clock is approaching the midnight hour
I leave my window open, all the lights are out
And from the darkest night comes the lightest shout

Moonshine, moonshine moon
The cow jumped over the moonshine moon
Moonshine, moonshine moon
I’ll love you tonight under the moonshine moon

Well as we walk through the streets, there’s no-one nowhere
And our nightgown’s trailing and our feet are bare
I don’t know where we’re going and I don’t care
Just as long as you’re here and the moon’s up there

Moonshine, moonshine moon
The cow jumped over the moonshine moon
Moonshine, moonshine moon
I’ll love you tonight under the moonshine moon

Now all the little boys and girls around the town
Dreaming through the darkness till the moon goes down
But me and my baby gonna be up all night
Dancing under the moonlight

Moonshine, moonshine moon
I’ll love you tonight under the moonshine moon
Moonshine, moonshine moon
The cow jumped over the moonshine moon
Moonshine, moonshine, moonshine, moonshine moon

05. Forgetting All My Troubles

There’s a secret, the golden flower knows
When you’re falling in love
There’s a silence, the ending darkness feels
When you’re singing with love

Remembering life, a good blessed life
I’m forgetting all my troubles
I’m forgetting all my troubles

There’s a summer, a frozen heart recalls
When you’re breathing with love
There’s a pathway, the silver candle shines
When you’re seeing with love

Remembering life, a good blessed life
I’m forgetting all my troubles
I’m forgetting all my troubles

There’s a quivering, the waken forest gives
When you’re dancing with love
There’s a humming, the diamond raindrops hum
When you’re crazy with love

Remembering life, a good blessed life
I’m forgetting all my troubles
I’m forgetting all my troubles

06. All Over The World

All over the world
People must meet and part,
There`s someone like me
Feeling the pain in the heart.

Someone may meet again
Under the same bright star,
If maybe some night
You come back from afar.
Who cares if tonight
I don´t know where you are.

Are you thinking of me now?
Missing having me around?
If you have forgotten me

My world will come tumbling down.

All over the world
Others are sad tonight
There´s someone like me
Watching the sun´s fading light.

All over the sky
There is the same warm glow,
Here under that star
I´m wanting you to know

…Wherever you are that I still love you so.
…Wherever you are that I still love you so.

07. Nobody Knows You When You’re Down And Out

Once I lived the life of a millionaire,
Spending all my money, I didn´t care.
Taking my friends out for a magic time,
Bought whiskey, champagne and wine.

Then I began to fall so low,
Lost all my good friends, I didn´t know where to go.
If I get my hands on a dollar again,
I’m gonna hang on to it till that eagle grins.

Cause no, no, nobody knows you
When you’re down and out.
In my pocket, not one penny,
And my friends, I haven´t any.

When I finally get back up on my feet again,
Everybody wanna be my long-lost friend.

It’s mighty strange, without a doubt,
Nobody knows you when you’re down and out.
Nobody… when you´re down and out.

Nobody knows you
When you´re down and out.
In my pocket, not one penny,
And my friends, I haven´t any.

When I get myself back on my feet again,
Everybody wanna be my long-lost friend.
It’s mighty strange, without a doubt,
Nobody knows you when you’re down and out.

…when you’re down and out.
…when you’re down and out.

08. The Cry Of The Lone Wolf

Everybody told me to walk away
Though you made me feel good.
I was just a fool, didn’t hear them say
Love is like a wild wood.

Something in the way I was lost and found
Something made it feel right.
Spirited away by a haunting sound
Calling in the deep night.

They told me not to listen
To the cry of the lone wolf.
Next time I won’t listen

To the cry of the lone wolf.

Following the smoke of your glowing fire
Shining through the twilight,
Then you slipped away as the flames grew higher
Back into the deep night.

They told me not to listen
To the cry of the lone wolf.
Next time I won’t listen
To the cry of the lone wolf.
Next time I won’t listen
To the cry of the lone wolf.

09. Heartstrings

Is it a game, or is it a show?
We don’t really care, we don’t really give a damn.
You’re like an angel playing with my heartstrings.

For life or a day, for real or pretend,
If I had my way, this feeling would never end.
You’re like an angel playing with my heartstrings.

You’re asking me not to leave you,
And baby that makes me smile.
Let’s get our house with a sea-view
Forever or just for a little while.

We’ll drink some champagne, we’ll look at the stars
And do it again cause baby the world is ours.

You’re like an angel playing with my heartstrings.

Sometimes I think we’re only,
On a day trip to Disneyland.
But remember that night you got lonely
And asked my daddy for my hand.

Having a bite, having a ball,
Talking all night and dancing until we fall.
You’re like an angel playing with my heartstrings.

You don’t call me for days, heaven forbid,
The next thing you say you want me to have your kids.
You’re like an angel playing with my heartstrings.
You’re like an angel playing with my heartstrings.

10. The Walls Of The World

The sun is only shining like it always does
But I never noticed it in the sky before
And you don’t need to worry
‘Cause I need your love, my friend

There’s a strong kind of feeling when I know you’re near
Nobody alive can take it away from me
And I feel like I’ve known you for a thousand years
Bring it out into the light

‘Cause I think I’m gonna write it on the walls of the world
So everyone will know today the love I hold for you
I will write it on the walls of the world

So that the sun won’t fade away the words I say to you
I love you

And I know I’m not a loser when I’m on my own
I could be miles away in another land
And it keeps me together when I’m far from home
I won’t keep it out of sight

And I think I’m gonna write it on the walls of the world
So everyone will know today the love I hold for you
I will write it on the walls of the world
So that the sun won’t fade away the words I say to you
I love you

11. Secret Symphony

You’re like a secret symphony
That was created just for me.
Some knowing mind, some guiding hand
Must have designed, must have planed it.

You’re like a garden in a land
Of barren rock and lonely sand,
Where rain can fall, where grass can grow
And through it all, I can love you so.

Isn’t it strange, but it’s only a feeling
Isn’t it weird, it feels like I’m stealing your soul.

Isn’t it wild, this world that we know now
It’s gonna be fun wherever we go now.

You’re like a prayer I’m scared to say
The one who might have got away
Somebody worth all I’ve had to face
No one on Earth could replace you.

You’re like a secret symphony
That was created just for me.
Some knowing mind, some guiding hand
Must have designed, must have planed it.

Release Year: 2012 | Cat: Dramatico DRAMCD0078

CD Booklet Text:

Writers
Track 1 – Ron Sexsmith
Tracks 2, 3, 10 & 11 – Mike Batt
Track 4 – Fran Healy
Track 5 – Katie Melua
Track 6 – Françoise Hardy
Track 7 – Jimmie Cox
Tracks 8 & 9 – Katie Melua/Mike Batt

Publishers
Track 1 – Sony/ATV Music Publishing (UK) Ltd
Tracks 2,3, 10 & 11 – Dramatico/Sony/ATV Music Publishing (UK) Ltd
Track 4 – Stage Three Music Publishing Ltd
Track 5 – Melua Music Ltd/Sony/ATV Music Publishing (UK) Ltd
Track 6 – Editions Musicales Alpha
Track 7 – Paul rodriguez Music Ltd
Tracks 8 & 9 – Melua Music Ltd/Dramatico/Sony/ATV Music Publishing (UK) Ltd

Produced and arranged by Mike Batt

Lyrics available at www.katiemelua.com

Musicians
Drums: Henry Spinetti
Bass: Tim Harries
Guitar: John Parricelli, Steve Donnelly & Luke Potashnick

Featuring The Secret Symphony Orchestra
Conducted by Mike Batt

Engineered by Haydn Bendall and Luke Batt
Engineering assistant Olga Fitzroy
Mastered by Mazen Murad at Metropolis

Photography by Simon Fowler
Jewellery by Pebble London
Design by www.wearetourist.com

www.katiemelua.com www.dramatico.com

Rating: ★★★☆☆
suite101.com

There is a little bit of a feeling of more of the same with this album, which given how good Katie Melua’s songs and singing are is not necessarily a bad thing. However, given her self-proclaimed desire to stretch herself, it would have been nice if she’d experimented somewhat with other styles.

One real criticism concerns the packaging. The little booklet that comes with the CD has some very nice pictures of Katie but little information. There are no lyrics and only the bare minimum for production and writing details.

That said, overall the album is a welcome addition to the Katie Melua collection. She is one of the best female singers out there and this production brings that out well. A bit more diversity would have been nice, as would some more songs as the whole album comes in at less than 40 minutes. But if wanting more is the worst thing you can say, then that speaks a lot about the quality of the album.

Rating: ★★★☆☆
Express.co.uk

There’s something distinctly old-fashioned about Katie Melua but it’s old-fashioned in a totally good way.

The voice is full of character and gentle while the songs on this, her fifth studio album, can’t be faulted from the cheeky Moonshine through Françoise Hardy’s dreamy All Over The World to her own very fine composition Forgetting All My Troubles.

She has wisely decided to stick to what she does best, making this another quirky, musically proficient outing for the really rather good Miss M.