Castle of Useless Junk is the second EP release from White Swan Black Swan, aka Arch Hill’s own Ben Howe and
partner Sonya Waters, formerly of groups such as Fang, Superette, The Instigators and others.
Their first self-titled EP was deliberately low key, distributed among friends, sold at gigs and the Arch Hill website –
though a couple of tracks did sneak onto Radio NZ National, the b-net and Kiwi FM.
Like the first, Castle of Useless Junk was recorded at Sonya and Ben’s home, tucked away from the city among
overgrown gardens and rooms filled with collectables, flickering lamps and faded paintings of imagined places.
Castle of Useless Junk is in fact a taster for the more ambitious forthcoming project of a ‘double mini-album’,
which will feature on one side the songs of Sonya (White Swan) and the other those of Ben (Black Swan).
Joining Sonya and Ben here are Rick McShane on drums (formerly of the Chainsaw Masochist, The Broken
Heartbreakers and others) and Ben Furniss on bass (Surrealistic, The Broken Heartbreakers and others).
Both the ‘double mini album’ and the Castle of Useless Junk EP were mixed and given a nice understated touch
at the Beech House in Nashville, USA by none other than the legendary Mark Nevers, producer, engineer and
occasional band member for artists like Lambchop, Calexico, Will Oldham and of course our own David Kilgour.
White Swan Black Swan have been playing out live a bit recently, including a recent thirteen date acoustic tour
of NZ with David Kilgour, and other shows with Kelley Stoltz, Grand Prix, SJD, Pine and all kinds of other lovelies.