Tough To Trace

by Reticents

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1.

about

In the summer of 2016, Paul Hamilton was asked to provide two artworks for a Pop Art-based exhibition in London. He submitted re-make/re-models of two iconic works by Richard Hamilton, the godfather of Pop Art. Also that summer, his band Reticents re-convened for the first time in six years to discuss their decade-old debut collection, "Grasshopper". The meeting went so swimmingly that the trio decided to have a go at recording something new. This song - "Tough To Trace" - was the product.

Obviously, Richard Hamilton was still paramount in Paul Hamilton's mind. One of Richard's students, when he taught Art in Newcastle in the Sixties, was the future Roxy Music front-man Bryan Ferry, of whom Richard semi-jokingly accorded the mantle of "My finest creation".

The subject matter of "Tough To Trace", plus its blatant art references, seemed like it could be perfect Ferry fodder, and it became a tribute/homage to both him and Richard Hamilton irresistibly and naturally.

My lords, ladies and gentlemen, we give you (ahem) Retsy Music.

For video, see here: vimeo.com/193181909

credits

released November 26, 2016

Tough To Trace

Written by Hamilton, Thomson and Toynton

Dave Toynton: Bass guitar
Andy Thomson: Lead and rhythm guitars, keyboards, drum pattern
Paul Hamilton: Triangle, chorus keyboard stabs, vocal

Recorded and mixed by Andy Thomson
Mastered by Si Beex
Artwork: Halal Mop Unit
Produced by Andy Thomson with Si Beex

BYTE18
© Smoking Ant Records, 2016.

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Track Name: Tough To Trace
TOUGH TO TRACE

I only went with your friend Trace
So I could see you some more.
Look at me sucking in my guts
Trying to gain some definition to my jaw.
Storing up my jokes, empathy and smokes
Should you go short;
I buy your brand now ’cos I want to be
Seen as your sort.

Life’s been tough to Trace
In her outline I picture your face
Yeah, it’s tough on Trace
It’s tough on the whole human race
But especially…
It’s tough on me…

It’s easier and harder that you’re the inamorata
Of my best friend;
It’s easy to find reasons to see you
But hard keeping up this pretence.
So when we get splattered in a West End bar
As an eight-legless foursome
Trace draws your attention as your other half
Paints me a life of awesome.

Life’s been tough to Trace
In her outline I picture your face
Yeah, it’s tough on Trace
It’s tough on the whole human race
But especially…
It’s tough on me…

Have I gone too far down a cul-de-sac?
Too far in, no way out.
I see you and he ecstatically happy
Buddy, can you spare a doubt?
I’m obsessed by your caress
But how can I make you mine?
I can leave without Trace but
Where do I draw the line?

Life’s been tough to Trace
In her pain I paint your face
Yeah, it’s tough on Trace
It’s tough on the whole human race
But especially…
It’s tough on me…

Lyric: Paul Hamilton
Music: Paul Hamilton, Andy Thomson & Dave Toynton