DAVID MacGregor has not been on a record cover before.

After more than a decade as the principal songwriter of alt-popsters Kid Canaveral, his image features on the sleeve of his first album as Broken Chanter, out next week.

The record has a wide-screen feel to it, of big skies and endless vistas. From insistent lead single Wholesale through a heavenly collaboration with Gaelic star Kim Carnie to closing secular hymnal Free Psalm, the record glides and soars – a bird’s eye view of frosted landscapes and snowy hills.

MacGregor birthed the songs on his own during the wild winter of 2018 in Ardnamurchan and Skye before developing demos with Hector Bizerk drummer Audrey Tait and Paul Gallagher, AKA the singularly named Gal, producer of all Kid Canaveral’s albums to date.

Following a tour in support of their 2016 effort Faulty Inner Dialogue, songwriter Kate Lazda had told MacGregor she wanted to put the band on hold while she pursued other projects.

Lazda encouraged her bandmate to do the same. When MacGregor did, he set out to “write something which was nothing like Kid Canaveral”.

Holed up in a remote house on the coast of County Donegal, MacGregor told Gal to put the kibosh on anything that sounded too like his parent band.

With Gal at a control desk in the kitchen, and MacGregor and Tait set up in the frontroom, the three worked solidly for a month.

“There was glorious sunshine, torrential rain, a blizzard – every single day,” MacGregor says. “It helped us create the mood.”

The three would break for lunch to walk around the frozen peninsula and deserted beaches, MacGregor making field recordings for the album, adding sounds of the sea to clips of Japanese commuter trains and environmental sounds from Ardnamurchan and Skye.

At one point, he misjudged the tide. Swelling waltz Should We Be Dancing begins with the gurgle of Atlantic water filling his Dr Martens.

Back at Glasgow’s Glenwood Studios, work continued with collaborators including Jill O’Sullivan, Emma Kupa of Mammoth Penguins and musician/theatremaker Gav Prentice.

Prentice cowrote Free Psalm and album highlight Cheering In The Distance, and will open some Broken Chanter dates in his latest ULTRAS guise.

Gaelic singer Carnie features on Mionagadanan, her vocals weaving spine-tingling magic around Tait’s stunning dance beats.

The National: Gaelic singer Kim Carnie features on the albumGaelic singer Kim Carnie features on the album

Mionagadanan is a rare South Uist word for those tiny particles seen in a ray of sunlight.

The musician, who is currently learning the language, wrote Carnie a “huge essay” explaining the song wasn’t a gimmicky Gaelic bauble.

“It was ridiculously long,” says MacGregor. “We were so lucky to get her. When she came to the studio, Gal asked why she decided to work with us. She said: ‘David sent me this long email and I wanted to see what was wrong with him.’ “She came though!”

September 6 CCA, Glasgow, 7.30pm, £8; With ULTRAS: Sep 7 Beat Generator, Dundee; Sep 19 An Tobar, Tobermory; Sep 20 The Old Bridge Inn, Aviemore. With Randolph’s Leap: Oct 17 Sneaky Pete’s, Edinburgh; Oct 18 Lemon Tree, Aberdeen; Oct 19 The Braemar Gallery; November 2 MacArts, Galashiels. With Paper Machine Music: November 22 Crooked Rain Club, Fort William; Nov 23 Puffin Coffee, Kilchoan. Ticket and album bundles at bit.ly/BCAlbum www.brokenchanter.com/tour.

Broken Chanter is out on September 6 via Olive Grove Records/Last Night From Glasgow