A reminder to all who plan to come to a show on this tour (kicking off tomorrow in Portsmouth, UK!)- there is no opening act! It’s just us, playing as much from Star, King and Dove as we can manage- an approximately 2-hour long show with a short break somewhere in the middle. Consult the venue’s website or your ticket for when the show starts, and whatever the time is, it means that’s when we start! We’d really hate to hear that anyone missed the first half of the show because they came late…..

A few folks have asked about the age restrictions for Belly’s upcoming shows. We absolutely want anyone and everyone who would like to see us play live to be able to do so, and we are thrilled that some Belly fans from ‘back-in-the-day’ have indoctrinated their children and created the next generation of fans. In general, the age restrictions are set by local/state laws, the promoter, the venue, etc. Sometimes a band has some control, and we’ve made what shows we can outright ‘all-ages’, but some venues have general 18+ or 21+ policies. However, many of these places will allow a minor in for a show if accompanied by a parent or guardian, even though a show is listed as 18+ or 21+. Please, always check with the venue in advance to find out what their policy is!

A tremendous THANK YOU to all who attended the listening party- we had a great time and hope you all did too. The family of Belly fans really is something special and your enthusiasm and support has been so appreciated and encouraging throughout the process of making DOVE. We hope everyone got to where they were sleeping last night safe and sound and those that came from afar have an easy trip home!

A day of recovery now from the excesses of the party for us, then we’ll be sequestered in the RNRCC* rehearsing for the upcoming shows- see you at one (or two, or four….)!

Extra-special thanks to-

Darren and Donna at Pop Emporium for letting us have the party in such a fantastic place

Joann Seddon for all the planning and setup for the fantastic cake and cupcakes

Mad Hatter Bakeryfor the fantastic cake and cupcakes

Revival Brewery for the great beer

Nice Slice for the amazing pies

Kris Hansen who manned the sound system

*rock’n’roll control center, AKA Gail’s basement

For those that are obsessive and interested in this kind of stuff….

All of the songs that are on DOVE (out May 4th!) are what they are because they were brought to ‘presentational finality’ by the band as whole and we share writing credit equally. But each song started from a different place and took a different path to completion- something unique about Stars Align is that it started with an idea Chris (the drummer, can you believe it?! thinks he’s Phil Collins or something!) created in GarageBand while he was building the website for his first kid’s book, Indi Surfs, and needed some background music. It didn’t get used as a clip for the website (Tom recorded a couple short, surfy bits instead)- but the idea kept kicking around and evolving in Tom’s laptop. Eventually it ended up being one of the early backing tracks up for consideration for Dove with the working title ‘Dreams’.  Tanya pretty quickly came up with a great vocal melody and lyrics, but we got hung up with getting the transitions feeling right through the ‘asymmetrically structured’ chorus. We put it aside for a while and there was talk about mothballing it, but near the end of one of the pre-production rehearsals we decided it was too good a tune to walk away from, so we bashed away at it for a couple hours- and somehow it just seemed to finally come together.

It’s probably the most musically past-referential of all the songs on Dove- at least as far as specifically referencing Belly’s past with the structure, 50s-esque progression and some of the guitar sounds. It definitely shares DNA with Now They’ll Sleep from King.

For those that are interested, you can hear one of the very early (instrumental) incarnations Chris & Tom did of what eventually, after a long road, became Stars Align, as well as the clips used for Indi Surfs in the playlist below!

  1. Dreams early inst 4:02
  2. INDI SURF SLOW 1m 1:00
  3. Surf Fast 03 0:43
  4. Hushabye_Mountain Belly 3:21