Enzology Part 5 - Frenzy (1978-1979)
In Episode 5 of Radio New Zealand National's story of Split Enz the band gets fired up after the Luton session and records 'I See Red' with whiz-kid producer David Tickle, loses the plot by recording the Frenzy album with Jimi Hendrix’s tea boy and gets fired up again by losing gear in a fire - one day before their Nambassa Festival performance in New Zealand.
Songs in this programme include Carried Away, Next Exit, I See Red, Give It A Whirl, Stuff And Nonsense, True Colours plus rarities Evelyn, Up Against A Brick Wall and others.
Album Trivia: Frenzy
Producer John Leckie visited Split Enz while they were rehearsing at the Old Mill Studio in Devon and was interested in producing Frenzy. Mallory Earl ended up with the job, while Leckie went on to produce The Stone Rose’s debut album and Radiohead’s The Bends.
A jammed song from the Old Mill House sessions, 'Who’s Got The Biggest Bumhole of Us All', was considered unsuitable for the album. It was also unsuitable for airing in Enzology!
“Tim [Finn] and I had a to-do during the making of that record. I told him to f… off, he told me to f…ing write my own singles then. He left for three or four days and we carried on without him”.
The lyrics in 'Abu Dhabi', which take a swipe at "greedy westerners" and "oil barons", weren't printed on the album's lyric sheet in case they caused offence to rich people or were considered racist. The vocals were also mixed low.
The album cover was painted by Raewyn Turner, the band’s lighting operator and Eddie’s partner at the time.
Due to the original version of the album sounding “like it was produced in a milk shake machine”, Frenzy was completely remixed by Eddie in 1981 for its debut release in Canada, the U.S. and the U.K. Side 1 contained songs from the Mallory Earl sessions, plus the Tickle-produced 'I See Red'. Side 2 used mainly Luton recordings. The northern hemisphere version had the same album cover as the original Australasian LP.
Mal Green had a hard time kicking the bass drum fast enough during rehearsals for 'I See Red'. He felt so paranoid about it, he thought he might get sacked from the band.
This story was broadcast on Enzology, Friday 14 December 2007