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** Edition of 300 copies. All handmade sleeve in full coloured papers tipped on. Colour lined inner. Japanese obi With full colour insert ** For more than three decades, Andrew Chalk has been quietly defining the outer reaches of the British electronic music - as much an anomaly as a snapshot of his generation’s ideas and arching concerns.
Singular in its vision - an illumination of rewards gained by pluming the unknown, his work, stretching across dozens of releases, treads its own path - a reminder of the true scope and character of the contemporary musical avant-garde. His is the fertile ground of punk, planted with the politically charged seeds of Cornelius Cardew and Scratch Orchestra - the same flowering which gave us Nurse With Wound, Current 93, Organum, and to a certain extent Throbbing Gristle, Psychic TV, and Coil, taking a radically different form. Last year we were thrilled by the long overdue vinyl reissue of his 2005 masterwork, Time Of Hayfield, which spent countless hours in our listening cycle. Now, at the tail end of 2018, we’re thrilled to present a brand new effort by Chalk - Baroque Steps, a stunning LP, limited to a painfully small edition of 300 copies.
Pushing at the boundaries of the canonical and “orthodox” vision of experimental music, Andrew Chalk’s decades long journey, growing from the realms of industrial music and noise, sculpts a second world for countercultural sounds - far more connected, through its sonic signifiers, to the New Age movement, than it is to similarly conceived efforts of avant-garde music and offshoots of punk. It is, in the elegant sense, where challenging ideas and structures meet sublime beauty - the ambiences of a darkening world. It is into these depths which Baroque Steps delves.
Comprised to two, untitled, side long works, Baroque Steps is a poetic, impressionist study of nature’s transitions in sound, laden with metaphor and as melancholic as it is celebratory. As its ambiences and structures unfurl, layered harmonics immerse the ear in a tense, hypnotic state - electroacoustic music taking a visionary, yet harshly realistic form. These are the droning sounds of dystopia, planted with the seeds of hope.
Yet another brilliant entry by Chalk, and utterly essential on every count. Slow moving, beautiful, tense, challenging and filled with the allusion of endless possibility, it’s impossible not to be dawn into this artist’s singular world. Issued on in a tiny Edition of 300 copies by the his own Faraway Press, each in a handmade sleeve. Grab it fast. This one won’t sit around for long.