“Keep It Wild” is an EP, but also a ‘Best of Album’. Not a ‘best of’ album, mind you, but a selection of songs from a record that should have been released in 2009. Nathaniel Fregoso, frontman of The Blood Arm, had so much on his plate with his band that the half-finished album disappeared into producer David Newton‘s drawer. In the lockdown of 2020, Berlin-based Fregoso rediscovered the songs and decided to compile some of them into an EP. In view of the original time of its creation, the result logically exudes the charm of the noughties: the title track sounds like a rough version of Franz Ferdinand, “Belarus” has the pop appeal of the Kaiser Chiefs, while “Out Of Key” is more in the The Strokes notch. Also included, at least on the promo: A beautiful cover of “Cuando calienta el sol”, originally published in 1961.
Of course, I can’t do anything without the love and support of my wife Ali Bell who has seen releases come and go like sunsets and still loves me whether they are successful or not – I appreciate that.
I’ll have more news for you next week, but please enjoy the EP and video, and leave feedback in the comments. Have a great weekend.
What’s the deal with Keep It Wild? Twelve years ago, I started recording an album with David Newton at Rollercoaster Recording in Burbank, California. Dave played bass, Joel Isaac Black played drums and I played guitar and keys. We were lucky to get Jessica Espeleta to lay down lead guitar on a few tracks. My brother, David Alexander, even played acoustic guitar on a cover. I was excited about the album and we were well on our way.
For various reasons, recording came to a halt and the tracks lay dormant on a hard drive. During 2020’s lockdown, I rediscovered the songs and put together the best of them for the Keep It Wild EP which will be released this Friday the 13th via RIP Ben Lee Records. Not many photos exist from this time, but today I am happy to share a few shots with you, in the hope that you get a sense of time and place. Jackie was a big part of the process as usual. Scroll through for a peek. And yes, that’s Kim Fowley in that last shot.
A big thank you goes to Dave, Bekki Netwon, Joel and Jessica, without whom I couldn’t have finished these songs. I’m still really proud of them.