Wednesday, 15 March 2017

Jon Brooks - Autres Directions




Jon Brooks - Autres Directions
Pre-orders 7th April 2017
Release date 5th May 2017

12" Mist coloured vinyl LP
Reverse board cover.
500 hand numbered copies,
with download code in sleeve.
£16.99

I will have pre-release copies at the Independent Label Market at Spitalfields, London on 1st April, drop me an email if you are coming and would like to reserve a copy. info@claypipemusic.co.uk



On his third album for Clay Pipe Music, Jon Brooks (Advisory Circle/Ghostbox) takes inspiration from  from time spent in France. 
 
"I have a natural affinity with France, which seems to span a large proportion of my adult life. This
album is based directly on experiences, feelings and emotions garnered from times spent fairly
recently in Brittany and Normandy, on different occasions.
There’s a certain feeling, when you enter a rural French village on an Autumn mid-afternoon. It’s a
slower pace of life than we’re generally used to; the Centre Ville can feel deserted, as many of the
inhabitants are, ironically, away on holiday. As the village church clock tolls, it strikes home a
simplicity, a purity of existence that couldn’t really exist elsewhere.
There’s a feeling of unabashed romance upon waking up in the early morning, opening a window
onto a field of fog, as the sun hasn’t quite started to rise; with the only real movement belonging to
a car headlight in the distance, making a journey to somewhere undisclosed.
Whenever I’m travelling, I take with me a means of recording ambience and constantly listen out
for interesting situations where sound can be captured and transformed. Field recordings play a
significant part in the tapestry of the album. The textures underpin, envelop and frame the work,
adding a sense of context and grain.
I spent a lot of time thinking about how I wanted the textures and atmospheres to be on an equal
footing to the melodies. The ‘wake up’ music which begins the album, I composed as a piece that
could, theoretically, be played by a ferry company to wake passengers upon their early morning
arrival into dock, over the small speakers installed in ferry cabins. To create the atmosphere, I took
the recorded piece onto a ferry, bound for France, and played it back in the cabin over a speaker,
capturing the playback with a microphone, allowing the sound and reverberant space of the ferry
cabin to influence the ambience of the piece.
Other ways of bringing the ambience of situations into the recorded pieces involved playing back
textures (that I’d created electronically in the studio) in various places (disused barns, country
lanes etc) and capturing them again on a microphone and building pieces around those
atmospheres. I also noticed that, preparing to leave the ferry, there were various metallic pitched
drones that just seemed to hang in the air, combining naturally with idling car engines - these
became music and it was from these distinct pitches that I added complimentary electronic textures
around them.
I also liked the idea that various people that I encountered on my travels could be featured on the
record. For example, the woman who owned a Boulangerie in one of the villages probably didn't
realise that she would become part of a recording, but fragments of her voice can be heard,
contributing a distinct texture.
All of this leads to, for me, an interaction between the studio and the elsewhere; bringing two
distinct worlds closer together, to form an impressionistic aural painting that lives and breathes in a
manner that hopefully puts the listener in a situation where they can feel these experiences in quite
a tangible way."
Jon Brooks, March 2017.
As impressive and immersive as anything I've heard, this collection is a testament to Brooks' skill as a sound designer and songwriter. It is at once bold and chilling, forges memories and dreams carved out of the juxtaposition of unease, and the comfort of symbiotic communication. Autres Directions is a thing of wonder, and yet more evidence that Jon Brooks is indeed one of the greatest composers out there today. Barry, Piccadilly Records, Manchester.
Musically there is much to place the record in the ongoing artistic development of its author. Part episodic series of ethereal soundscape canvasses, part field recording driven hauntological essay, part ambient/prog reinterpretation of the kind of approach the likes of Pink Floyd, Harmonia or Eno were aiming for in the 1970's - In totality it reflects all of this whilst retaining its own robust identity and makes for a deeply immersive sonic experience that reveals great depth with repeated listens. 
Shaun Rogan, The Active Listener.
 










Tuesday, 13 December 2016

The Hardy Tree - 'Through Passages of Time' Repress.

the hardy tree

12" vinyl, in reverse board sleeve. 500 hand numbered copies.

Download/stream at: itunes/bandcamp/spotify/greedbag etc


The Hardy Tree is the musical project of Clay Pipe Music's founder Frances Castle, her first LP ' The Fields Lie Sleeping Underneath' was the initial release on the label over five years ago.
 
Through Passages of Time soundtracks buildings and areas of London that no longer exist. Small places stumbled upon by accident, traced on maps, and illustrated in Georgian prints. Frequently visited pubs that have been rebuilt and renamed, the ship breakers yard decorated with wooden figureheads at Baltic Wharf, or the Thames Watermen living in the shadow of the Hawksmoor designed church at Horselydown. Lost places re-imagined and brought to life using clusters of sequenced Moogs, off Kilter electronics, vibes, and Mellotron - capturing the essence of the dark city and its more bucolic outer suburbs. This is a plaint to an older stranger London that is quickly becoming priced out and forgotten. Look carefully and clues to the ancient past can still be found.

 SPENCER'S PICK OF THE WEEK - The Hardy Tree, Through The Passages Of Time (Clay Pipe Music) Another beautiful release from Clay Pipe here. Delicate melodies weave themselves in and out of wonderful, warm Moog synths & mellotrons creating an enchanting wistful paean to an England long forgotten. This is hauntingly beautiful and easily one of the records of the year. Please go seek it out and support this amazing label. Spencer Hickman, (DeathWaltz Records) Mondo Music Weekly.
 
"Through Passages of Time" belongs to another (green) world and congratulations should go to Frances Castle for divining this wonderfully touching collection and successfully capturing it on tape. It's musical psycho-geography par excellence and probably the most human record you will hear all year. Get it while you can as, like much of the city it commemorates, I am sure it will be gone before you know it.The Active Listener

Castle draws distinctive scenes that are as alluring and enigmatic as her acclaimed artwork. An understated yet remarkable genre-bending pleasure in short. DOA 


This is a wonderful record, a record that would appeal to anyone who likes good music, but especially rewarding for anyone of a certain age who likes the Vic Mars album The Land And The Garden out on the same label or indeed anyone who is familiar with the music of Vernon Elliott. It is both nostalgic yet modern. Terrascope
 
Through Passages of Time provides elegies for locations such as Newport Market, Sandbridge Court, Sluice House Tavern, even (*shudder*) Cut Throat Lane. The happy use of Moog, Mellotron and other seemingly antiquated instruments is both tribute and reflection. A Closer Listen.


Tuesday, 18 October 2016

The Hardy Tree - Through Passages of Time. Available Now.



The Hardy Tree – Through Passages of Time.
Release date 2nd Dec 2016.
12" coloured blue vinyl with reverse board cover. 500 hand numbered copies.
SOLD OUT  
There will be a re-press, please sign up to the mailing list.
I will make pre-orders available ASAP.

Available as download/stream through:
itunes/bandcamp/spotify/greedbag etc

  
The Hardy Tree is the musical project of Clay Pipe Music's founder Frances Castle, her first LP ' The Fields Lie Sleeping Underneath' was the initial release on the label over five years ago.

Through Passages of Time soundtracks buildings and areas of London that no longer exist. Small places stumbled upon by accident, traced on maps, and illustrated in Georgian prints. Frequently visited pubs that have been rebuilt and renamed, the ship breakers yard decorated with wooden figureheads at Baltic Wharf, or the Thames Watermen living in the shadow of the Hawksmoor designed church at Horselydown. Lost places re-imagined and brought to life using clusters of sequenced Moogs, off Kilter electronics, vibes, and Mellotron - capturing the essence of the dark city and its more bucolic outer suburbs. This is a plaint to an older stranger London that is quickly becoming priced out and forgotten. Look carefully and clues to the ancient past can still be found.
 

Looking Down on London
The Culvert
The Peerless Pool
St John Horsleydown
Newport Market

Baltic Wharf
Pepy’s Walk

Sandbridge Court
Sluice House Tavern

Penny’s Folly
Near Windmill Bridge
Harringay House
Cut Throat Lane



https://soundcloud.com/clay-pipe-music/the-hardy-tree-looking-down-on-london

https://soundcloud.com/clay-pipe-music/sandbridge-court

Monday, 1 August 2016

Alasdair Roberts and James Green Mini Tour.

Due to popular demand the show at The Old Dentists  has now been split into two separate sittings/houses/shows.
TIMINGS AS FOLLOWS
EARLY SHOW https://www.wegottickets.com/event/375249
EO1 07:00 07:30
AR1 07:45 08:45
LATE SHOW https://www.wegottickets.com/event/370346
EO2 09:00 09:30
AR2 09:45 10:45
If you already have tickets, they are for the late show. If you're at all confused check timings on the WeGotTickets link through which you bought your tickets!




Alasdair Roberts and James Green are doing a mini tour in support of Plaint of Lapwing.
26th September - London,Old Dentists, E5 0LH
27th September - Sheffield , Regather Works.
29th September - Glasgow, Old Hairdressers.


I have now SOLD OUT of the LP however there are still copies available at:







Wednesday, 4 May 2016

'Plaint of Lapwing' by Alasdair Roberts and James Green.

http://claypipe.bigcartel.com/

Clay Pipe Music is proud to present 'Plaint of Lapwing' by Alasdair Roberts and James Green.

12" vinyl with download slip.
500 copies in red, 300 copies in blue.
Hand numbered reverse board covers.


 Here Alasdair explains how the record came about: 

Mayday 2012: an email from James Green in Sheffield reached me in Glasgow. I knew James a little – not particularly well; we had met a few times over the years and had collaborated a little too (I'd sung on a couple of songs on the album Folk Songs 2 by his group The Big Eyes Family Players). I understood that he played the harmoniflute, an instrument somewhere between a harmonium and an accordion, and seemed very enamoured of it. His email read: “had an idea about approaching you with... an ep or few songs (trad or otherwise) accompanied by my harmoniflute, and nothing else... just an idea once the dust has settled, maybe...”.

 The dust was not long in the swirling before coming to rest upon both of our past endeavours, and shortly we set to work on the project which became Plaint of Lapwing. My initial thought was to concentrate on just four pieces – I'd just recorded the Drag City LP/CD A Wonder Working Stone and had some songs left over from that. In a process which James was later to characterise as 'surreal', I started emailing him recordings of my disembodied voice; in response I would eagerly await, tracks featuring aforesaid voice with James' harmoniflute accompaniment.

The project gradually, almost imperceptibly, developed in scope and complexity over two years. I began sending James more vocal takes as well as other sonics I'd generated, for a variety of original compositions and some by other authors (including a song by the Perthshire folklorist Hamish Henderson, an arrangement by Benjamin Britten of a piece by the Irish poet Thomas Moore, a lyric by beekeeping Cornish film maker Timothy Neat and a setting of a work by the Angus poet Violet Jacob). James in turn increased his instrumental palette to include drums, guitars and all other kinds of musical things.

  As the project developed, so did a wonderful friendship blossom between James and myself.  I found I was sending vocal tracks attached to emails detailing current grievances in my personal life, as if envisaging James as some kind of agony aunt.  James, in return, sent completed tracks and, apparently regarding me as some kind of sounding board, emails venting his strident opinions (invariably in line with my own) on whatever political matter ruled the day. Before we knew it the disembodied sounds had become incarnate and James and I found we had an LP's worth of material - an LP featuring beautiful artwork by Frances Castle which you, dear listener, now have the opportunity to welcome into your own home.


Lino print by James Green. 


Tuesday, 19 April 2016

Caught By The River Thames

Thanks to everyone who bought copies of Tyneham House. They have now all been posted so you should receive your copy soon. This is an early reminder that later in the summer I'll be playing some music at the Caught By The River Thames Festival. You can buy tickets HERE Next up is Alasdair Roberts and James Greens 'Plaint of Lapwing', news on that soon.


Monday, 21 March 2016

Pre-order Tyneham House.


 Tyneham House.
10" Coloured Vinyl with hand made booklet.
300 numbered copies + download code.
Pre-orders now available.

Previously available on CD as a split release between Second Language and Clay Pipe Music, this is its first outing on vinyl.

The small village of Tyneham, on the beautiful Isle of Purbeck, in Dorset, was once a thriving little community – that is until the British Government requisitioned it for training manoeuvres and other ‘strategic purposes’ in the run up to WWII. This was supposed to be a temporary measure, but the area remained in military possession long after hostilities had ceased, causing distress among former inhabitants, many of whom were farmed out to prefabs in nearby Wareham and Swanage.
Tyneham was characterised by its red telephone box, a tiny parade of shops – Post Office Row – and a grand country pile which stood about half a mile away from the village: Tyneham House. The army removed the building’s oak panelling and ornate decorative details and promptly set about using it for target practice. So great was the shame expressed locally about the damage inflicted upon one of Dorset’s grandest houses that the powers that be decided to grow a copse around the remains of the structure to give the impression that it was no longer there. Despite this, a substantial part of the structure remains intact, including its Saxon hall. 

Land access around Tyneham was opened up in the 1970s, but admission to the house remains strictly verboten. Those who’ve been found around the premises, especially anyone wielding a camera, have felt the full weight of military trespass law. Tyneham today is regarded as a nature reserve by some – as a national embarrassment by others. It’s still a political hot potato, in Dorset at least.

The pastoral, wistful yet ineffably disquieting music of Tyneham House is made by artists  who wish to remain anonymous here, save for their eponymous title. The musicians are happy, however, to let it be known that these recordings have been around for some years (many of them complied from old cassettes) and that they take inspiration from the 1960s/’70s/’80s work of the Children’s Film Foundation – a body who really ought to have made a film about this mysterious West Country curio. At least now we have its endlessly poignant soundtrack.



Tracklisting:LP

• A Chalk Horse
• Rookery Wood
• Coppice Walk
• Binoculars
• Bletchingley
• Post Office Row
• The Crows Circle
• Winter Carriage
• The Ragged Cat
• I Shall Not Cross The Sleeping Hill
• The Porch Room
• Saxon Chapel
• Last Village Before The Sea
• Lit Room At Midnight

Download Extra :

A: A School Holiday, 1977
B: May Day, 1981