composition, product

Awake in Fields of Albion

Another new SKON release on Bandcamp and one that I am extremely proud of and keep returning to.  The material was recorded and mixed around two years ago but never really found a place on any of the labels or other albums I’ve produced since then and it has evolved over time to be the epic beast that it is today.  Essentially this is the deconstructed guitar album, originally titled “Hermitworks” that i’d been working towards at the time with most of the tracks originating in space drone guitar improvisation.  At the time I was experimenting with making the guitar sound unlike a guitar so there are many layers of processed, filtered and morphed guitar sounds building a dense patchwork of fuzz and shimmer.  Regular guitar tones and chords chime out of the fuzz however and one of the things i’m most proud about is the level of melody peaking throughout the granular clouds.

My intention in picking up the guitar was to try making some expressive music and after this album I think I learnt how to do it enough to be able to make similarly expressive music electronically. I haven’t laid down my axe for good however.  In unleashing this blast from the recent past i’m allowing myself to move forward.  I have a lot of exciting ideas and music planned for the not too distant and while i’m preferring the sampler based setup for live performance I still love the very direct way in which the guitar transforms bodily expression into sound.

The guests on this album help pull it in different directions. While Andrew Thomson provides the occasionally solid foundation of mulched drone and found sounds, Briony (Mr Maps) Luttrell’s cello is like the sun peaking through clouds.  But lest we get too wistful, Paul Forbes Mitchell (Hetleveiker) uses PD to eviscerate, recombine and reanimate signals heralding a glistening sound-world that might just swallow you whole.  My influences at this time were undoubtably stretched between Robert Fripp, Fear Falls Burning and Fennesz, Pimmon so if you like those artists you might like this.

You can check out Awake in Fields of Albion on the player to the right, download for free on bandcamp or pay $13 or more for a physical version with extra tracks.  A word of advice: skipping through the tracks is likely to provide a confusing listen as they change often quite dramatically and almost never really end up anywhere near where they start.  Give them a chance to take you where they lead.


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