This is not a new release per se, it’s a collection of pieces that for the most part appeared on albums I released as a singer-songwriter over the years. Hell, I even pressed one of them on real, no-foolin’ CD!
I first started messing around making my own recordings in 1999, and one of these pieces, “The Long Winter”, even dates back to then. Listening to it now, I’m amazed that I managed to concoct enough appealing sounds to result in a satisfying piece of music. But to me, it works. Perhaps you’ll agree.
One of the pieces, “Yellow Emperor”, has not been heard anywhere before and was the result of me messing around with various synth plug-ins … next thing I knew, I had a not-half-bad piece on my hands and nowhere to put it… until now.
This music is not ambient music — I was an acid folkie, basically, so this is a collection of mid-fi instrumentals and wordless pieces with heavy psychedelic influences, but also a lot of my beloved Krautrock and folk music as well.
Here’s some more info:
1. Yellow Emperor: See above. Messing about, discovered M-tron mandolin and went nuts!
2. Distant Voices: Back in 2000 I did a lot of messing about with vocals, having discovered the glory of The Beach Boys.
3. Altai: I made an album at a real recording studio in 2009, produced by two amazing guys named Shawn and Mez. This was the closing track and is the result of some late-night improvisation from all of us. So this piece is the highest-fi one here, recorded with state of the art gear, man.
4. The Long Winter: Young non-tastemaker messing with reverb back in early days of Internet music.
5. The Life of Milarepa: What started as an experiment in making backwards tracks sound good actually ended up pretty stellar — there’s more structure to the piece than there seems at first.
6. The Great Engineer: Yes, back in 2001 I was plainchanting over a primitive drum machine! Crazy. But this piece is likely worth it if you can get to the long guitar solo toward the end of the piece.
7. Farewell/Eternity: This old piece actually has a great deal of significance to me, because the first part was written in memory of my grandfather. The bigass Krautfolk jam at the end was not!
8. Larkrise: This acoustic guitar piece was the last track on an album of British folk music I made a few years ago.
9. Spring Hum: Exactly what it should be. This piece from 2011 has some spring sounds, some synth, some humming. A feel-good tune.