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The Time Trilogy (EP)

by A Gardening Club Project

FOREVER LEAVING HOME / Lyrics by Terry Findlay Music By Martin Springett A missing ship adrift in heaving darkened seas a waning moon dims behind a slowly drifting cloud A lone sailor keeping watch is praying to his sunken gods for a sign for a sign to follow home to follow home A jagged flash lightening blinds his seeking eyes in the darkness following a spectral form appears offering everlasting safety relief from curiosity believing in salvation the sailor shakes it’s hand A missing ship Adrift in heaving darkened seas A waning moon dims behind a slowly drifting cloud A lone sailor keeping watch Is praying to his sunken gods For a sign For a sign to follow home Now the faithful sailor Sails from sea to foreign sea always believing that safe harbour is drawing near but as the years go by without arrival on the shore the sailor wonders if a deal made in desperation can ever save your soul ever save your soul Forever leaving home
SISTER OF THEFT / Lyrics from a poem by Sandra Kasturi Music by Martin Springett Time is the mother of invention And the sister of theft It is the glass globe of hand spun conjurings On the end of the spindle shaft Dancing in the shadow of the long hand Twirling in the lee of the short hand Time is the mother of invention And the sister of theft
WOMAN IN THE WAVES / Words and Music by Martin Springett The thunder rolls as white foam flies against the steel grey skies of Perthudden A woman stands amongst the pounding waves tied to mast and to rigging Three see her there from the darkening shore her hand is raised as if in greeting Then closed to a fist it becomes a hook In the heart of the one she has chosen Now the one of three whose heart is pierced must step into the churning waves To join her there amidst the rising tide to drown or to take her as his bride Instrumental interlude On thunderous dark and lonely nights the two are the ocean’s children their faces are masks of madness and love As thunder rains down from above Bright kisses fall upon them Bright kisses fall upon them


The Time Trilogy
A Review by Stephen Bennett / Two-time BAFTA winner, screenwriter, and musician.

Few contemporary musicians are as adroit in conjuring the quintessentially English stylings of classic prog-rock as Martin Springett. The grandiose melodic sweep and structural complexity that decorate the timeless work of Yes, Pink Floyd, King Crimson, and Caravan come as second nature to Martin. He grew up in that world. He speaks its language effortlessly and eloquently. Fortunately – especially for us, his audience - rather than simply pay homage to the treasures of the past, he has always sought to move the story on, to add new ingredients to the mix and challenge the misplaced notion of ‘prog’ as an outdated and ironic misnomer in the 21st century.
And so, this new work – The Time Trilogy - feels like both a departure and a progression. It’s a departure (pardon the pun) that launches the listener, Ancient Mariner-style, into the storm-tossed narrative of an epic voyage - a textbook prog device, in itself - and a progression (yes, pardon that pun, too) via the deft incorporation of a contrasting musical palette rarely deployed in the coolly intellectual corridors of progressive rock. And in order to realize the full potential of this particular musical venture, the erstwhile Gardening Club guru and his current band of highly accomplished conspirators have embraced the sultry, pulsating, heat-haze rhythms of North Africa and southern Spain.
The unlikely marriage works like a dream.
These opposites definitely attract. The two worlds don’t so much collide as an embrace with the wild abandon of a couple who’ve got some serious catching up to do.
“Forever Leaving Home” opens the proceedings, venturing out into dark and threatening waters roiled by Drew Birston’s churning fretless bass as Kevin Laliberté weaves darting, nylon-string patterns around lyrics that speak of foreboding; of an ominous, edgy leaving-taking towards gathering storm clouds on the horizon. The two Sultans of String alumni are swimming in their Mediterranean, melodic-minor element from the off. The heady atmosphere is established. We’re bound for some exotic, faraway beach but whether it’s looking more like Skull Island than Riviera Paradise at this stage, it’s hard to tell.
“Sister of Theft”, with its slippery, stuttering Maroc’n’Roll rhythms, sees the waters calm and the clouds start to lift. The ocean turns to desert and in the distant, shimmering heat-glare we can just make out the approaching band of familiar musical travelers; a latter-day Robert Plant among them, perhaps. He’d be dancing to this one. And all the while, Sari Alesh’s swooping violin flurries dip and soar like a bird circling the caravan.
The trilogy concludes with “Woman in the Waves”, cooling the hot-sand temperature a touch with its ringing, 12-string acoustic chords. The storm feels more distant now as the propulsive urgency of a loping, Afro-Brazilian log-drum beat reminds us that we mustn’t linger. It’s time to unfurl the sails again.
The eponymous ‘Time’ element is complete and yet, it seems, the story is far from over.
Though not, officially, components of the previous trilogy, it’s hard to escape the links in both style and theme over the second half of the EP. The instrumental, “Finding Home”, sees us wandering far from shore again, becalmed, half expecting the slap of an approaching oar to encroach on the fragile, fogbound intimacy of this mysterious shadow-world. Until that is, the spell is broken by the dazzling burst into a flight of “Rare Birds (Young Wings)”. The wind’s picked up again, the mist has cleared, and now we’re stumbling towards the light on a lazy, lop-sided, camel walk rhythm, picking up new musical passengers as we go – xylophone, Gabriel-Esque synth swells, multi-tracked vocal washes – stretching out and rejoicing in the familiar prog-rock impulses that got us here in the first place.
All that remains is for “A Dance To The Music of Time” – both a nod to a literary masterpiece and a virtuoso showcase for the outstanding six-string and arranging skills of Kevin Laliberté – to take us home. And so we’re transported back, by Flamenco-propelled, Tarifa-bound felucca, across the sunlit Straits of Gibraltar to familiar, solid ground - all optimism and uplift, now. And just as the Time Trilogy’s opening track spoke of leaving things behind, this rousing instrumental closer hints at finding them again. There’s nothing somber here - more an elegant, courtly celebration of a proud adventure ending with a noble flourish.
One trilogy, then.


released January 22, 2021

Produced by Kevin Laliberte
All songs by Martin Springett Except Where Noted
Except A Dance To the Music Of Time by Kevin Laliberte


1. Part 1 Forever Leaving Home / Lyrics by Terry Findlay

Kevin Laliberte - Flamenco Guitar and Electric Guitar
Drew Birston - Fretless Electric Bass and Acoustic Bass
Martin Springett - Guitars and Vocals

2. Part 2 Sister Of Theft / Lyrics from A Poem by Sandra Kasturi

Sari Alesh - Violin
Kevin Laliberte - Flamenco Guitar - Electric Bass
Martin Springett - Guitars and Vocals

3. Part 3 Woman In the Waves

Martin Springett - Guitars Bass and Vocals

Tracks based on Martin Springett’s demos recorded at Studio Spong Toronto
Track 2 recorded at Kevin Laliberte’s studio in Toronto
Bass parts recorded at Drew Birston’s studio Toronto
Sari Alesh recorded his violin at his studio in Victoria BC

Mixing, sound design, string arrangements, drum programming, and production by Kevin Laliberte

Arrangements by Drew Birston, Kevin Laliberte, and Martin Springett

Artwork by Martin Springett

A Gardening Club Project


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A Gardening Club Project Toronto, Ontario

THE GARDENING CLUB is a progressive rock band infused with plenty of other styles and influences, founded by Martin Springett, the band has released three albums, the Gardening Club, the Riddle, and Boy On A Bike. Based in Toronto Ontario and Victoria BC. ... more

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