October 2022


We have good news and sad news. The good news is that we've finally recorded and mixed/mastered all the songs for our upcoming original album 'Assorted Gemstones' concluding with two instrumental songs 'White Lotus Flower' and 'Pink Lotus Flower' - John wrote them in the Himalayas around 2000. We've already started working on artwork...mainly Anthea's job though...we'll try to finish everything by the end of November so that we can release the album around Christmas after nearly 3 years since we started this project on New Year's Day 2020!

The sad news is that we've just learnt that Vic Keary, legendary sound engineer, inventor and founder of Thermionic Culture LTD, has passed away. We met Vic back in the early/mid 90s during John's recording sessions at Vic's legendary recording studio 'Chiswick Reach Studios' in West London. The studio was full of amazing and incredibly precious all-valve vintage recording equipment including Joe Meek's 'The Black Box' EQ, Leevers-Rich 2-track valve tape machine, Brenell Mini 8 tape machine, hand built all-valve console (with REDD - we believe - valve line amps from Abbey Road Studios), custom made valve limiter - we called it 'Blue Box' (made in the 1960s for IBC Studios, where it was apparently used on the Who's 'My Generation'), as well as a brilliant collection of precious vintage microphones (mainly valve microphones) and so on...

Now, we'd like to share a story about one equipment at Chiswick Reach Studios - a nasty sort of oscillator/varispeed which was used by The Rolling Stones during 'Their Satanic Majesties Request' recording sessions. John had an idea that recording a song with rather fast tape speed by using oscillator so that when it plays at normal speed, it changes the texture of the sound (like Beatles' 'Rain' or 'I'm Only Sleeping' thing). So, John asked Vic about this idea and to use this particular oscillator/varispeed but Vic wasn't entirely happy to do this for whatever the reason. John really insisted that this particular song 'On A Rainy Sunday' needs a special ending and it's got to be this idea! Finally, Vic agreed and gone to somewhere...then came back with a pair of rather thick rubber gloves! He briefly explained to us that this equipment must be handled with extreme care. Due to faulty wiring, 800V of electricity is leaking on the surface of the equipment so you must not touch anywhere expect those small plastic knobs...!! The result was AMAZING!! We learnt a lot about vintage recording equipment and analogue recording techniques used in the 1960s from Vic. Thank you for everything you taught us . We'll pass it on to the next generation... RIP Vic Keary.

Unfortunately, we cannot share any songs from 'Chiswick Reach Studios' recording sessions as we lost everything (including master tapes from Chiswick Reach recording sessions) in 1996 when we were forced to leave the UK. However, we re-recorded some songs from the sessions as Clockwork Flowers including 'On A Rainy Sunday' , 'The Time' and 'Take Off' for our unreleased original album 'Wonderland' (2009-2011). 'The Time' and 'Take Off' received songwriting awards from Mike Pinder (Moody Blues) and Denny Laine (Moody Blues/Wings) in 2011.

Love & Peace

Clockwork Flowers

Vic Keary 1938-2022