Bloodsport, if you didn't know already, is the new album from myself. It's the 9th overall (give or take mini-albums, EPs, live albums, etc) and it's coming out on my own This Is It Forever label on March 25th.
You can snag a pre-order here, and the CDs come in tins! How good is that?
|Artwork by Cameron Steward|
Aside from all that promo stuff, I thought I'd talk a little about the album on here, to give it a bit of context and a bit of depth. Sort of like those 'track by track' things, but with more emphasis on the album as a whole.
Anyway, the way I usually make albums is to just relentlessly make a batch of music over the course of a few months, with a sort of over-riding 'theme' going on. Sometimes it's just because I've got a new bit of kit, sometimes it's because it's sunny, sometimes because I want to make things faster, but whatever it is, it usually bleeds into everything from that time period before I cut it off and assemble it into an album. Sometimes tracks won't make the cut, but will end up sounding fairly similar to other stuff that didn't make the cut on previous albums, so they'll become best friends and be released together. Funny how that goes.
Bloodsport is pretty much all built from the ground up, just me in my little box room in Saltaire. One track was me re-tooling a fairly old idea that basically had all that idea scraped out of it in the end, and one was supposed to be for a split that didn't happen, where we would be trying to use old trance chord progressions and make them into swirly ambient stuff. Probably for the best that it didn't happen.
The first three are supposed to be a sort of 'mini suite' - I was a bit bored of constantly doing ambient openers, and having albums try to grow from a slow start. I thought this time, I'll introduce the record with some unsettling guitar loops that pan from left to right at a pretty horrific speed (Je Suis Désolé), before settling into something more serene, before that gives way to piercing bass dread notes and jungle breaks (Bis Ich Komme). Then that sifts into probably the biggest sounding thing I've ever done: Sigourney Weaver Fanclub President (getting better at track titles aren't I?)
The two Absolute Living Hell tracks were actually done as individual tracks after I'd bought a Volca Beats drum machine - I ran it through my guitar pedal setup and got these really gnarly sounds (mainly due to some distortion) and so built two tracks up, not realising that they both sounded pretty similar. Oops! I don't think I could've gotten away with them being seperate entities, so I thought I'd better call them 1 & 2. I blame the drum machine's pitching and the fact I didn't alter it when I ran them through my pedals - of course the bass notes would impact the key, Gavin - jesus man, get it together.
Perfekt was a little skit I'd come up with whilst listening to a lot (and I mean a LOT) of Boards of Canada. You can absolutely tell, too. Anyway, I didn't want to spin it into a long track as it just didn't need to be any longer than it is - I'm trying to get away from doing that too, making songs long just for the sake of it.
Slur They Words is a bit of a weird one. I'd been buying sample packs pretty regularly since I moved to a solo outfit, mainly due to technical limitations, but also because they can be quite fun. I bought this one called Grime Vocals, which I thought I'd only use as a bit of flavour in certain tracks - y'know, pitch down a few 'yeahs!' or whatever, but then this one rap really caught my attention, and lo and behold, I fit it to this beat I'd made and it sounded ace. Really dark & sinister. "Would satan fans like it?" I wondered, before realising that if they didn't, that's not up to me. Just do what you want and see where it goes - that's a good way to be I think. Anyway, yes - it's a satan track with a rap.
Apex Redditor is the one track title I get most reaction too, and I kid you not - I woke up with it in my head, y'know how you wake up sometimes and you're still groggy and your mind is just all over the place? I had that, and for some reason Apex Redditor popped in. Mad. Anyway, the track is a pretty simple one, and is about the only thing on there that isn't deathly dark and brooding. It's got a bit of hope to it, so wanted to end the record with it. I glitched a piano and added a few synths and beats and called it a day. The spoken word stuff at the end btw, is an old interview with Can on German TV from the 1970s. Thought it was nice, so added it in.
So yes, there you go - Bloodsport, baby. The album's out soon, and there'll be a single between now and then, with some tasty remixes as well, so look out for that!