Articles by Si Forster
It’s right that – once again – a quintessentially album-based band has an (almost) entire album covered in one go. It feels right that the ideas explored in a fairly challenging album are picked apart and reworked. And yes, it even feels right that it’s sometimes a bit fiddly to initially get to grips with.
Sometimes we look for the poetic and romantic side of horror as it appeals to our taste for the gothic and nostalgic. Sometimes though, all we want to see is Alice Cooper stabbing someone to death with a bicycle. Welcome to John Carpenter country.
It seems that every score that Clint Mansell puts his name on and heart into is labelled as a masterpiece. He has set his own bar incredibly and beautifully high with Loving Vincent.
The result is not unlike the second half of New Order’s Substance compilation where their journey from Joy Division’s grieving to True Faith’s celebration is cheerfully tinkered with.
It fills in little gaps of his musical history while creating more unanswered questions, and this is weirdly more satisfying than having the whole story parked in front of us.
The imagery that they put across of the colonial settling of Australia, had they put all of this into words in the time the music occupies, would have possibly seen them hanged for sedition for portraying a new life in the colonies in as bleak and visceral a light as possible.
The whole thing taken in one go can feel like someone’s connected Robin Hardy’s Wicker Man to the National Grid without first asking permission.
They are both markedly different to each other thanks to their instrumentation and subject matter, but even the two themes of science and religion don’t keep White Sands Harbour, 1984 and Synaxis far apart in the universe that Ellis Cage has created.
Sing the Night in Sorrow lifts spirits, adds shade to memories and is just such a bloody hoot to listen to.
The band have picked up all the best bits from everything they love from the scene (and others), turned it inside out, added new stuff and then forced it upon us as hard as they could. There are absolutely no complaints from me about that.
There’s a slightly distorted unreality to what goes on that makes experiencing this record both beautiful and uncomfortable, depending on how you want to take it in.
to be honest if you listen to this and don’t feel the need to try to make a difference, or give a small amount to someone who is in a better position to do so, then this record isn’t for you
This is all stuff that means a lot to the performer, and hopefully to the rest of us.
Of course this list is incorrect. The following guide will probably do more to confuse new listeners and annoy longstanding fans alike.
Far from a document of the dead, The Sad and Beautiful World of Sparklehorse is mostly a celebration of a life spent making friends, peers and fans happy.
Mark Lanegan continues to refuse to stand still and do anything that’s expected of him, and while he continues to do this at such a consistently high standard, long may he continue to do whatever the hell he feels like.
The sign of a good split record is the blend of “come for what you know, stay for what you don’t”, and The Time Between Us is an excellent example of this.
Vinculum certainly helps with the vague understanding that staring up at the night sky is something that takes in an incomprehensibly huge amount of, well, space.
A great set from the person I came to see, and eyes opened up to those who I hadn’t. Nights out are rarely so complete.
“As a musicianeer and, I suppose, some kind of entertainer, it is my job to provide nourishment for the soul. And so, I dig deep, deep in the well, to find the sweetest waters, and bring them up uncorrupted.” Si Forster talks to Duke Garwood about his new album & the current state of the world.
Duke Garwood is angry. Garden of Ashes is his Angry Album. Duke being Duke though, this is all filtered through various channels and processes before the end result appears as a mostly laid-back, calm and beguiling piece of work