Humanity and inherent goodness in these moments
Described by Park as “the smirking soundtrack to my exit from Christianity”, “Slide” is a song that finds the Isle of Lewis artist turning down communions to instead turn-up the gospel according to Metallica. A daringly damning indictment of the Church, its Parquet Courts-esque call-back chorus of “joining is easy… the hard part is leaving” is likely to convert plenty of believers to Park’s songwriting abilities, less so the big man upstairs.
Adding personal context to “Slide”s revelatory, if controversial, subject matter, Park reflects:
“In the churches I grew up in, doubting one’s faith was called ‘backsliding’. You’d hear murmurs at the after-church tea & biscuits about such and such a fellow who was spotted out drinking in such and such a bar at the weekend, snogging some heathen lout. Textbook backsliding. It’s a term that bothers me because it implies passivity — like the only conscious choice is to believe in the Bible, and anything else is seen as a form of giving in to the inevitable temptations of ‘the world’. For me ‘backsliding’ was a choice to move away from something that was making my mental health worse, was enforcing upon me a worldview that felt at odds with my inner morality, and most of all — was clearly (at least to my own judgement) historically untrue. In the song I kind of touch on examples of backsliding behaviour, and reclaim the humanity and inherent goodness in these moments. Pretty much; if I’m backsliding, it’s a pretty fun slide.”
With its laid-back and loping riffs, laissez-faire lyrical observations and a fuzzed-up guitar solo so precarious it threatens to derail at any moment, “Slide” somehow hangs together as one of the slickest pieces of slacker-pop you’ve likely ever heard come out of Scotland. With a sound that apparently owes more to the Playstation than his time spent in the pews, the track takes its musical cues from one of the popular culture’s less-likely prophets…
“One of the biggest inspirations to this track was the Spyro the Dragon soundtrack on PS1.” grins Park. “That game’s soundtrack was full of funny dominant 7th chords at every opportunity, and this was what I was trying to channel with the textures and chords on this song.”
Finely balancing the sincere with the silly, like the playground staple of its namesake, “Slide” is a release that ultimately wants you to have fun. Something that proves to be a recurring theme throughout his new EP: ‘Scampy Lampy’.
A testament to the fact that even the greatest art can come from the most unlikely of places, the ‘Scampy Lampy’ EP was largely recorded in the laundry room of a campsite on his home of the Isle of Lewis. With all tracks written by Scott C. Park, its songs navigate through lyrics of the heart-warmingly comical to the heart-on-sleeve confessional, as he tells his story of losing faith to searching for inner peace.
“The ‘Scampy Lampy’ EP generally deals with my mental health journey of leaving behind nearly a decade of committed Christianity. Park says. “During the making of it I got some counselling and other forms of therapy, and now my mental health is the best it’s been in ages. Having these songs was a big part of that too — sometimes a feeling doesn’t really present itself to me unless I write about it for a few days.”
Featuring “Slide” as well as the dreamy previous single “The Smoke”, the diverse range of sounds explored by the EP finds Park straddling the lo-fi sidewalks of Pavement as much as they find him stalking the streets of Nashville; tipping his hat to the oeuvres of Wilco, Kurt Vile, and Bright Eyes along the way.
Mastered by Pete Fletcher at Black Bay Studio with additional drums and synths also added there, the EP was mixed jointly between Fletcher and Park. Additional contributions throughout the record include those from DC Macmillan and Simeon Fletcher on drums, Paul Martin on keys, Conor Smith on pedal steel, Michael McGovern on acoustic guitar, and Park’s wife Danielle on backing vocals.
The honest declaration of an artist trying to figure out the world, whilst having the most fun he can along the way, on the ‘Scampy Lampy’ EP Scott C. Park lays the foundation for a bright and promising career ahead. Oh and if you were wondering about that name:
“It’s called Scampy Lampy because it’s a silly-sounding name. I like that,” says Park.