VESPERTINE & SON

is a sporadically active collective that, in conjunction with its precursor, the Vespertine, has foisted Gnac, Quigley, the Montgolfier Brothers, At Swim Two Birds, the Otto Show, the Bitter Springs, Bear (and a few other worthies) upon the world. The lights are currently dim, and while we expect to be able to offer these releases for a while longer, supplies of everything are thinning.


Distribution for Vespertine & Son in North America (and, to some extent, beyond) is coordinated by Radio Khartoum. If you are a shop looking to purhase wholesale quantities, please click here for a list of our wholesale distributors.

AT SWIM TWO BIRDS: Before You Left

Vespertine & Son (UK)
v & s 102

Before You Left underlines Roger Quigley's credentials as an expert purveyor of slowly unravelling melancholic pop.

Over more than a decade, both on his own and as leader of Manchester's Montgolfier Brothers, Quigley has developed a distinctive style of composition and delivery. The voice, increasingly rich and sonorous, presides over a backdrop of delicate, repetitive guitar arpeggios and sweeping cello. The mood — soporific, hypnotic — recalls Spiritualized's woozy refrains as well as the likes of Bill Callahan and Leonard Cohen, with whom Quigley has been compared in the past.

Regular live collaborators Sophia Lockwood and Otto Smart bolster the music, and there's an appearance by Doves keyboardist Martin Rebelski, who wrote and arranged Let Her Go with Quigley.

With a knowing nod to A Man Alone, Sinatra's bleak exposition of love and loss, Before You Left unblinkingly explores the collapse of a relationship with the help of recurring melodic motifs.

In a recent blog, former Creation and Poptones boss Alan McGee declared: "With their baroque music, regretful lyrics and northern soulfulness, the Montgolfier Brothers should have been huge". With the release of Before You Left, there's still time to catch up with At Swim Two Birds.

01. Intro

02. I Must Be Losing You

03. The Night We Ran Away

04. Let Her Go

05. Ad Nauseam

06. Before You Left

07. No Fear

08. Dead Of Night

09. The March Of The Kings

10. Coda

AT SWIM TWO BIRDS: Quigley's Point

Vespertine & Son (UK)
v & s 1

First solo album in a long time from Quigley, and it's like having an old friend in the house—no matter that Roger (who is indeed an old friend...see Transmarine) has gone and re-christened himself "At Swim Two Birds." You know (or should know) his voice from The Montgolfier Brothers. Gentle yet intense, intimate...or is that confessional? Either way (and any way) we always find Quigley best when we want something quiet that is not background music. Undulating guitars with a hint of a carousel or circus in the distance, moody and pretty. Vaguely along the lines of the Durutti Column, but driven not by Vini's noodling, but by lyrics and personality. No, not that kind of personality—no rock stars please!

This CD comes in a die cut paper sleeve, neatly folded and quite elegant in simple black and white.

01. Little White Lies

02. Close To

03. Darling

04. Strange Designs

05. Women of a Certain Mental Age

06. Old Enough to Know

07. If I Sit Still

08. Swedish Lakes

09. I Need Him

10. Things We'll Never Do

THE BITTER SPRINGS: Benny Hill's Wardrobe

Vespertine (UK)
ves011

last 2 copies

More sour, surly and irresistibly absurd ramblings from south London’s least popular postmen. Features Vic Godard singing in French and producer Mike Coe reading the credits. Sample lyric: “from good to bad / from bad to worse / a hundred women in their knickers chase your hearse”

"Dark and blistering humour... Miserabilism turned on its head" — 8/10, NME

"A mainlined mixture of Jarvis Cocker, Johnny Vegas and Stuart Murdoch, mired in the mundane but utterly extraordinary" — 9/10, Melody Maker

01. Weekend at Your Parents

02. Benny Hill’s Wardrobe

03. Grand Prix Driver

04. Via Sex

05. School Milk Teeth

06. The Ballad of Little Subby Fingers

07. Blasted Neighbour

08. A Christmas No. 1

09. Bug Going ‘Round

10. No Sects Please, We’re British

11. Ton pipi sent les Sugar Puffs

12. Mike Coe Reads The Credits

THE MONTGOLFIER BROTHERS: All My Bad Thoughts

Vespertine & Son (UK)
v & s 5

Basement find! Unavailable since 2010. These last copies have minor discoloration on digipaks. Manchester’s Roger Quigley (At Swim Two Birds) and Mark Tranmer (Gnac) return with their first album in three years, turning their attentions (and dissections) this time to the changing face of their home town. Serene, yet as intense as anything you’d care for. More gorgeous sounds for the wee hours of the night. Have Mark and Roger taken out a trademark on this stuff?

01. The First Rumours of Spring

02. Don't Get Upset If I...

03. All My Bad Thoughts

04. Sins and Omissions

05. Stopping For Breath

06. Koffee Pot

07. Brecht's Lost Waltz

08. Quite an Adventure

09. Journey's End

10. It's Over, It's Finished, It's Ended, It's Done

THE MONTGOLFIER BROTHERS: Journey's End

Vespertine & Son (UK)
v & s 4

last 3 copies

More crepuscular melodies from Roger Quigley (At Swim Two Birds) and Mark Tranmer (Gnac) mark the Manchester duo’s return after 3 years in absentia. It’s a very classical oriented outing, completely sans percussion yet as quietly intense as ever, as Quigley reflects on the changing face of his home town. Title track is taken from the brothers’ new album, All My Bad Thoughts, however I think I like the other three tracks even better. The EP also includes a pair of slideshows, one for the title track and the other for a jaunty instrumental (OK, this one has percussion) called “Operation Faff” which has hitherto only been available as a bonus track on the Japanese edition of 2002’s “The World is Flat”.

01. Journey's End

02. Bridestones Revisited

03. Koffee Pot Blues

04. Koffee Pot Brass

05. Journey's End (video track)

06. Operation Laff (video track)

THE OTTO SHOW: The Very Spit of the Otto Show

Vespertine & Son (UK)
v & s 2

A collection of vintage recordings (some previously available on cassette but none previously on disc) from Otto Smart, the mysterious third Montgolfier Brother.

“My GOD, I don't know what to say...this is INCREDIBLE! Definitely THE record of the year, and one of the best records I've ever heard. Yes, I'm dead serious! Like the perfect mix of Robert Wyatt, Kevin Ayers, Vic Godard and Young Marble Giants...I know this is egocentric thinking but: it feels like this record is designed just for me and my musical tastes. 5 out of 5 is not enough, this record gets 6 out of 5.”
—Stepbrother Ernest (Testbild!)

01. St James's Park

02. Drinking Problems

03. She Slipped Off Her Dress

04. The Gas Fire

05. Gloria Grahame's Face

06. Girl with a 345

07. The Loneliness of Francis Fry

08. Sweatin' at the Church of the Good Shepherd

09. Col's Car

10. The Whale and Fred

11. Welcome to the Club

12. It's Only Sentiment

13. Six of One and Half a Dozen of the Other

14. Three Nightmares

15. On Saturday, I Saw A Viking

16. In the Morning

17. You Live and Learn

18. Sharon and Sue's Theme

V/A: An Evening in the Company of the Vespertine

Vespertine (UK)
ves004

Appendix Out (Alasdair Roberts), Butterfly Child, Cavil, Fuxa, Gnac, Lazerboy, Mongers, Nautilus, Oneironaut (Ian Masters), Quigley and Transfiguration all avoid opening their mouths in a concept album charting an evening in a large, dank, ruin of a house with track-suited trick-or-treaters with byronic curls and an ever-expanding drinks cabinet.

“21 song compilation with Quigley, Gnac, Lazerboy, and many others playing top notch studio mood pieces that are challenging, not just soundscapes; these are fully developed songs by bands who seem to operate in a different arena than the verse chorus bridge one that is so familiar to us all. I really could have gone on and on about this CD because it is so good, but the very experience of this CD is not to do that; the experience schools you to just accept it as what it is and enjoy it in your own way. I hope you do just that and get to spend some time with this disc at the station or in your home.” —Carl Thien, Gullbuy

“One we’ll still play when all our friends have died” —DDDD

“An innovative record if nothing else” —City Life

01. Oneironaut: Nine Inch Army

02. Appendix Out: The Actuation Riddle

03. Gnac: Can't Get Through To You

04. Butterfly Child: Thunderclouds

05. Quigley: The Hidden Gem

06. Fuxa: South Terminal Transit

07. Gnac: Sofia

08. Transfiguration: La Dolce Vita

09. Lazerboy: Suddenly In a Planecrash

10. Mongers: UHT Lounge

11. Gnac: Une chanson du crepuscule

12. Oneiromaut: Dokodemo Ni Iku

13. Nautilus: Two Minutes To Midnight

14. Midnight

15. Appendix Out: Fingernail Moon

16. Lazerboy: Eighteen Desperate Hours

17. Quigley: Slow Burner

18. Appendix Out: On the Astroturf Factory Tannoy

19. Mongers: Big Hobo

20. Cavil: Meet Me At Strumble Head

21. Transfiguration: Voyage au bout de la nuit