The first 7 Worlds Collide album, a collection of amazing musical talents from across the globe in aid of Medicin Sans Frontiers, was a unique live performance experience, fusing the varied talents of a stellar cast across a range of cover versions to create a series of shows that culminated in the live album of the same name. Seven years after that project, instigator Neil Finn has upped the ante with the new 7 Worlds Collide project, ‘The Sun Came Out’, a double album of original songs created and recorded by many of the original cast alongside notable new additions in an intense three weeks in his native New Zealand. This time the beneficiaries of this album will be Oxfam, as well as music lovers worldwide.

Familiar faces from the original album abound, Johnny Marr, Ed O’Brien and Phil Selway of Radiohead but this album, first and foremost presents the listener with new songs rather than interpretations of old favourites. ‘The Sun Came Out’ also features a whole host of new guest talents such as KT Tunstall and Wilco and heart stopping firsts, including Phil Selway's songwriting and vocal debut as well as dream collaborations such as those between Johnny Marr and Wilco's Jeff Tweedy; and KT Tunstall and Neil Finn .

At the heart of the record is Neil Finn. His enthusiasm and drive persuaded the likes of celebrated producer Jim Scott, Lisa Germano, Johnny Marr and Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy, Pat Sansone, John Stirratt and Glenn Kotche (amongst others) to spend their Christmas holiday in New Zealand and even interrupted KT Tunstall’s honeymoon in the process. The setting had its advantages though, as Neil notes, if the worst came to the worst the assembled cast could write it off as a holiday. Thankfully, the results mean that all those involved got both a holiday in one of the world’s most stunning landscapes and created some of the best music you will hear all year.

With families welcome, the studio became a constant whirl of creativity and energy throughout the three weeks allocated to create the record. Johnny Marr returned from a run on the beach with the basis of ‘Too Blue’, where Jeff Tweedy was waiting to add his talents; KT Tunstall stopped Neil retiring to his bed to complete ‘Hazel Black’; a wandering Johnny Marr added a chorus melody to Liam Finn’s ‘Red Wine Bottle’; Ed O’Brien fashioned ‘Bodhisattva Blues’ from a Tibetan chant. In this atmosphere, anything was possible and Neil’s wife Sharon found herself laying down her debut vocal on ‘Little By Little’ whilst Phil Selway also took his vocal bow and unveiled a hitherto unknown songwriting talent with his solo turn ‘The Ties That Bind Us’ in one take.

From Neil’s original doubts over the idea, “I thought, what is this? Is it just an ego thing’” came a double album of astounding collaborations for the listener and amazing memories for all those concerned in the recording. At the centre of it all stands Neil Finn, too humble to take the glory himself, it is left to KT Tunstall to give the credit due to the man who made this happen: “It’s Neil. It all comes from him. There’s something about him that made everyone open up creatively”.

Jeremy Hobbs, Director of Oxfam International said: "7 Worlds Collide is a great project - I hope The Sun Came Out is a huge success. Not just because it's a unique musical experience but because each CD sold will make a difference - raising money to fund Oxfam's work to fight poverty."