Sea Change III
Keep scrolling to learn more about the artists joining us in Totnes on 24th and 25th August for Sea Change.
Keep scrolling to learn more about the artists joining us in Totnes on 24th and 25th August for Sea Change.
What if your mother tongue is an ancient language of a land that you’ve never lived in, whose native speakers have only recently broken 200 years’ silence? What if the only place it has ever existed over the years is hundreds of miles away, in your home and your heart?
We are thrilled to have the 2015 Welsh Music Prize winner join us for Sea Change with a very special album that's close to our heart and close to our shores. Written entirely in Cornish, Le Kov translates as “the place of memory”. The title crystallises Gwenno’s relationship with the language - a fluent speaker who has seldom ventured south of the River Tamar, let alone lived there. As a child, she imagined that Cornish held similar cultural weight to the Welsh language: a living, spoken tongue that coursed through everyday life. “How wrong I was,” she admits. Never has their been a more poignant time to release an album that explores the individual and collective subconscious, the ‘dream state’, the myths and drolls of Cornwall, and the survival of Britain’s lesser known Brythonic language. Beautiful, timeless, psychedelic pop music.
Le Kov is a stunning album and we are very excited indeed to have Gwenno come and play it for us in Totnes this Summer.
One of the most consistently progressive, challenging and pioneering producers around, James Holden will be bringing his 'synth-led folk-trance standards' to Sea Change 2018 with his expanded James Holden & The Animal Spirits line up.
Consisting of long-time collaborators Tom Page (RocketNumberNine) and Etienne Jaumet as well as Marcus Hamblett, Liza Bec and Lascelle Gordon, their self titled debut on his own superb Border Community label was one of 2017's most unique and exciting albums. Only released in November, it rose to No.7 in Drift's albums of the year alongside glowing reviews across Loud and Quiet, The 405, Pitchfork, Crack, The Quietus and countless record shops.
In a bid to capture what he calls the unfakeable “psychic communication” of a group performance, The Animal Spirits was recorded live in one room together in single takes, no overdubs, no edits, in accordance with his own self-imposed dogma.
Born out of of the sheer unbridled joy of live performance, Holden’s third artist album The Animal Spirits is the momentous culmination of a radical transformation, as the former trailblazer of the early noughties computer music revolution is dramatically reborn as live musician and band leader. In embracing his new found knowledge of Morocco’s Gnawa trance tradition and repackaging the brash tones of pure trance into the accommodating spiritual jazz band format, The Animal Spirits can even be viewed as a kind of coming to terms with Holden’s early trance past, only now his focus is on the parallel evolutions of folk traditions the world over and their hypnotic effects on the brain, rather than the narrow formulaic European musical genre. This one-time international DJ has now officially hung up his headphones to turn his attention to setting a new standard for interconnected live electronic performance, as he gears up to take his new five-piece musical collective out on the road this autumn. And now we are through the looking glass into a new realm of inherently organic live electronic musical performance, there can be no going back to the prison of the rigid world of computer beats.
We can not wait to see this rich and kaleidoscopic live show... we're pinching ourselves still to be perfectly honest.
Currently celebrating 20 years piloting the revered record label Bella Union, Simon Raymonde has scaled another personal peak, a new collaboration with drummer Richie Thomas. They’re called Lost Horizons, and though neither of them have strictly been lost, their stunning debut album, Ojalá, is a rare sighting of two gifted musicians who, for different reasons, have been largely absent from music-making for the last 20 years.
Yet the record is proof of a telepathic relationship through music, established when they first became collaborators and friends in the eighties.
The pair booked just four days in an east London studio, with Raymonde on piano and Thomas on drums, and a simple plan: “It must feel like fun, never a chore, and it had to be improvised,” Raymonde explains. "If it never became a record, it didn’t matter. It was all about recapturing that feeling when you’re 15, making music with friends."
Ojalá was made for its core duo’s need to make music, and to create something beautiful, and meaningful, in these dark times - which is why the record is named after the Spanish for “hopefully” (or “God willing”).
We are hugely excited to see the live incarnation of the brilliant record as part of the Bella Union showcase.
Late last year, Toronto songwriter Tamara Lindeman released her forth studio album as The Weather Station. Self-titled and self-produced, it is an amazing collection of songs from one of the most arresting voices about.
“I wanted to make a rock and roll record,” Lindeman explains, “but one that sounded how I wanted it to sound, which of course is nothing like rock and roll.” The result is a spirited, frequently topical tour de force that declares its understated feminist politics, and its ambitious new sonic directions, from its first moments.
We're pinching ourselves that she's bringing her amazing live show to Totnes for Sea Change.
When we first started the festival (well, dreamt it up) back in 2015, it was a collection of thoughts, albums and post it notes. The one that was first stuck to the wall simply said "ANDREW WEATHERALL".
It is with huge personal gratification that in only our third edition we are able to bring Andrew Weatherall to Totnes for Sea Change, undoubtedly one of the most thrilling DJs we've ever had the pleasure to witness.
We are extremely proud to welcome Hatis Noit to Sea Change as part of the 2018 Erased Tapes showcase.
Japanese vocal performer Hatis Noit will release her enigmatic EP Illogical Dance via Erased Tapes worldwide on 23rd March 2018. The arresting 4-track record creates unique song-worlds with transcendent vocal interpretations that at once deconstruct and recombine Western Classical, Japanese folk and nature’s own ambience atmosphere. Illogical Dance also features Björk-collaborators Matmos, who were so impressed with Hatis Noit’s recordings, they volunteered to edit the lead track Illogical Lullaby.
Hailing from the distant Shiretoko, a small town in Hokkaido, which is the largest island in north Japan, Hatis Noit’s accomplished range is astonishingly self-taught, inspired by everything she could find from Gagaku — Japanese classical music — and operatic styles, Bulgarian and Gregorian chanting, to avant-garde and pop vocalists.
Sweet Baboo is Stephen Black, a native of the north Wales countryside and a single-minded, idiosyncratic singer. Black possesses an ear for a sparkling melody, a restless soul, and a gift for a deft lyrical turn – from darkly funny to piercingly tender, twinklingly boastful to deliciously self-deprecating.
Seven albums and four EP's over the last decade, as well as playing on albums with Cate Le Bon, Slow Club and H. Hawkline, Black has been a regular part of the touring line-up for all three bands. He has also performed with and produced Euros Childs, The Pictish Trail, The Voluntary Butler Scheme, Islet and Spencer McGarry Season and collaborated onstage and in the studio with Gruff Rhys.
Nothing is as glorious as Welsh psychedelia and Mr. Black is one of the finest.
Hater are Caroline Landahl, Måns Leonartsson, Adam Agace and Lukas Thomasson. They make blissfully dreamy guitar pop and had us absolutely hooked from the very first time we heard them.
Among those to declare themselves fans were the band’s heroes in The Radio Dept. who asked them to open for them on their first Scandinavian tour in five years. Hater have quickly established themselves as Sweden’s most exciting new indie act, offering up a sound that’s both instantly accessible and grows with every listen.
We are delighted to have them join us in Totnes for Sea Change as part of the Fire Records Showcase.
Returning to Totnes for the second time, we're delighted to celebrate Red River Dialect's new album - Broken Stay Open Sky, released on the immaculate Paradise of Bachelors label - with a full band live show.
The London-based, Cornwall-bred band brings a windswept energy and daylight to a contemplative, gorgeously rendered suite of songs about inhabiting the landscape, and our bodies, in joy and pain alike. Informed by songwriter David Morris’s spiritual practice, and recorded largely live in the studio, this is the band’s most ambitious and emotionally affecting work to date: atmospheric but deeply rooted, equally concerned with investigating the concrete and the cosmic, both quiet details of the everyday and looming matters of faith.
They came from the trees. Now settled in fertile east London, Snapped Ankles maintain the feral energy of the forest. Fight or flight. Primal motorik rhythms, the rush of white noise and post-punk angles; an aural onslaught played out on homemade log synths, electrified guitars and sticks beating hell on taut animal skin. We were absolutely thrilled last year by the The Best Light Is The Last Light EP and the following Come Play The Trees album (both on the Leaf Label). Genuinely different music made with passion, joy and seemingly a lot of fun.
Snapped Ankles will play a special wild showcase as part of The Quietus third tenure at Sea Change.
Hailing from the Isle of Man via Brighton, Penelope Isles is the collaboration of brother and sister Jack and Lily Wolter.
We were given a huge tip off on these guys and we're thrilled that Sea Change gets to be part of the early story here, as this is pretty special stuff.
The band mix waves of ambient delays and fuzz guitar noise, sonic dynamics and melodic pop hooks entwined with girl-boy harmonies. Their self-produced home recordings portray an honest lo-fi approach in capturing their own music. Their live set is hypnotic, captivating and moving, smeared with glistening psych, dreamlike chimes and potency that will transfix and satisfy.
Penelope Isles are currently recording their debut LP at the Bella Union Studios in Brighton and will join us as part of the Bella Union showcase.
The Boy Azooga story encompasses both Charlotte Church’s Late Night Pop Dungeon and playing triangle for the National Youth Orchestra Of Wales. But this only brings us to the margins of a musical map that also includes The Beach Boys, Nigerian funk, krautrock and 1940s British noir fiction.
We were lucky enough to see them last summer and they knocked us sideways... a proper young, exciting and hugely talented band, soaked deep in the magical waters of Welsh pop and psychadelia.
Hugely excited to have them play as part of the Heavenly Recordings family.
We were blown away, early this year, by this beautiful and evocative music.
Group Listening is a new project by Stephen Black and Paul Jones. Their debut is a set of selected ambient works arranged for clarinet and piano. It recalls the likes of Brian Eno, Arthur Russell, Euros Childs and Robert Wyatt.
Having met at Music College, Stephen and Paul went separate ways creatively. Stephen delved into pop, recording albums and touring extensively under the guise of Sweet Baboo, while working with Cate Le Bon, H. Hawkline and others. Paul leaned into the piano, pursuing a career as a jazz pianist and experimental musician. He played with Keith Tippett, formed the Jones O’Connor group, performed with noise improv bands and composed orchestral and chamber music.
Reconnecting years later, the pair discovered that their music tastes, bizarrely, met in the middle; they have a shared love of The Beach Boys, Ghost Box Records, Messiaen and Angela Morley. They both like ambient and new age music, bubblegum pop, Artie Shaw, Moondog and the outsider music handbook Songs in the Key of Z.
Like Virginia Astley or Simon Jeffes, Group Listening tread the overlap between classical and experimental music.