There aren’t many rockers who could get away with naming an album after their cat, but David Kilgour’s one of them.
Kilgour is widely regarded as one of New Zealand’s most respected musos.
Along with brother Hamish, he founded indie rock band and Dunedin Sound pioneers The Clean in the late 1970s.
He now makes music with his band, The Heavy Eights, and they’re performing songs from their latest album, Bobbie’s A Girl, at Queenstown’s Sherwood this month.
Named for Kilgour’s cat Bobbie, the album is bursting with warmth from acoustic guitars and soft, gentle vocals — even on the borderline bluesy Swan Loop, written by and featuring pianist Matt Swanson.
“We were considering getting a new cat, we went for a walk on a fine day and thought we must go to the SPCA tomorrow and get a cat,’’ Kilgour tells Mountain Scene, speaking from Los Angeles where he’s helping produce an album.
“We went home and there was a stray cat on our doorstep, quite a sick stray cat really, a young kitten, and that’s Bobbie. I thought she deserved a cover.’’
The album was recorded, mixed and mastered over the last few years at Port Chalmers, near Dunedin.
He describes it as having a kind of “melancholy, mellow’’ mood.
“I thought maybe I’ll just mine this, investigate this mood.
“I’ve had to deal with a bit of death over the last few years, as we all do. Some of it comes from there.’’
About two-thirds of the album is primarily instrumental, he says.
Despite decades passing, he says he still gets asked about The Clean on a weekly basis.
But his solo music has a different sound to it, he says.
“It was quite a long time ago now.’’
While he’s all but scrapped touring overseas, he says he’s looking forward to getting out onto his first NZ tour in a few years.
“We’re going to drive the whole country, we’re not going to fly.’’
To catch David Kilgour and The Heavy Eights, head to Sherwood, Thursday, October 24, 7pm, $32