Orlando Weeks — A Quickening (June 12, 2020)

UK FLAG   Orlando Weeks — A Quickening (June 12, 2020)   Orlando Weeks — A Quickening (June 12, 2020)♦ℜ♥   Nic ohromujícího. To píše Ben Tipple. Díky výjimečnému albu „Given To The Wild“ v roce 2012 se Maccabees odlišili od smečky partiček. Dle jednoho průzkumu patří mezi 15 nejlepších nezávislých bandů všech dob (14. místo). Album, které si zajistilo prestižní nominaci na Mercury Prize, vědomě vyskočilo z lehkomyslnosti „Toothpaste Kisses“ (Colour It In, 2007) či „Love You Better“ (Wall of Arms, 2009) a představuje temnější a nejatmosféričtější stránku. Poté, co se skupina o pět let později a o jedno album (Marks to Prove It, 2015) později rozešla, se zpěvák Orlando Weeks vrací albem „A Quickening“. Sbírka pozorování, která vznikla až po narození jeho syna v roce 2018, „Quickening“ vychází z The Maccabees v jejich nejéteričtějším, ale pouze roztažením jeho kytary, aby vytvořila vířící escapist dreamscape. Na elektronickém výstupu Radiohead na „In Rainbows“ a „King Of Limbs“ vydává všestranný zvuk, který si vezme úzkosti otcovství s bezkonkurenční krásou nového života — v neposlední řadě na St. Thomasi, upřímně od chvíle, kdy poprvé potkal svého nově narozeného syna. Všechno je podporováno jeho ohromujícími tóny, které dostaly obrovský prostor pro dýchání mezi rozsáhlými experimenty s rekordem. V brilantně atypické „Měsíční opeře“, někde mezi ukolébavým a kmenovým zpěvem, Orlando pevně ukazuje rozsah svých hlasových schopností — konstanta napříč jedenácti skladbami. Když to spárujeme s upřímným lyricismem a prudce stoupajícím hudebním stylem, jeví se „A Quickening“ jako nejosobnější věc Orlando Weekse, ovšem zdaleka to není nic ohromujícího. Before the split: Weeks performs with The Maccabees in concert at Alexandra Palace in 2017
Born: 8 August 1983
Location: London, England
Album release: June 12, 2020
Record Label: PIAS
Duration:     38:43
01. Milk Breath   3:16
02. Blood Sugar   3:36
03. Safe in Sound   4:25
04. St. Thomas’   3:17
05. Takes a Village   3:45
06. Moon’s Opera   3:06
07. All the Things   3:49
08. Blame or Love or Nothing   3:09
09. None Too Tough   3:35
10. Summer Clothes   4:00
11. Dream   2:55
♦   The Gritterman is the first book written and illustrated by Orlando Weeks. The book will be published by Particular Books, an imprint of Penguin Books and will be available in all good book shops. The album is a companion to the book and stars Paul Whitehouse as The Gritterman. His narration of the text is accompanied by music and songs written by Orlando Weeks and produced by Markus Dravs. ‘The Gritterman: a wintry children’s book inspired by Weeks’s grandad BillReview
Words by Sam Walton ⌊ 23 Jun 2020 ⌋ Score: 8/10
♦ℜ♥   When The Maccabees, Orlando Weeks’ former band, announced their farewell tour a shade under four years ago, there was a feeling on the one hand of sadness at the end of a rather likeable band, but on the other, contentedness that they had the sense to go out on a high: after a faltering, rather identikit set of early records, their final two albums showed a band growing into itself, sounding more like themselves than their influences.
♦ℜ♥   Thankfully, that trajectory of increasing confidence and maturity appears to have continued into Weeks’ debut solo record, written in response to becoming a father 18 months ago: A Quickening draws inspiration almost exclusively from noticeably sophisticated sources, be it the clean, spacious soundworld of Radiohead’s The King of Limbs, Robert Wyatt’s episodic Rock Bottom, or, most impressively, the yearning ache of Talk Talk’s Spirit of Eden, an album often imitated badly but, here, worthy of the comparison.
♦ℜ♥   Accordingly, the opening trio of ‘Milk Breath’, ‘Blood Sugar’ and ‘Safe in Sound’ revel in mournful distant trumpet, brittle loops of guitar and anxious chord progressions, and the coda of buzzing background brass and tumbling piano on ‘Takes A Village’ is evocative of a kind of heady fuzz and disorientation of sleepless nights.
♦ℜ♥   If all this is occasionally rather over~tasteful and polite, though, the album’s back half is where Weeks really finds his feet, with the final six tracks acting almost as a self~contained suite of songs that channel insularity and contemplation, warmth, gentle muscularity, sporadic passion and a sense of poise and clarity of thought that never truly cut through in Weeks’ old band: ‘Blame or Love or Nothing’ and ‘None Too Tough’ are the stand~outs, the former with a vocal line that never quite starts or stops where convention dictates, carving out melodies that run counter to the grain, the latter shimmering and beatific, with a reassuringly traditional horn riff midway through that earths the song. The bells and clunks and rattles in the album’s final minute pairing dissonance underneath deeply romantic piano balladeering makes for a fitting close to a record drawn from the emotional maelstrom of parenthood.
♦ℜ♥   Another commendable feature: while this is an almost defiantly grown~up record, about serious, mature issues, and Weeks is clearly hoping to throw off his past as a onetime puppy~dog~eyed indie frontman, A Quickening carries refreshingly little flab: all songs bar one come in at under 4 minutes, and for all its musical perfectionism and thematic introspection, it’s never self~indulgent, as some parenthood records can be. Instead, A Quickening is calm and intense, tactile and sleepy~eyed, and, perhaps most satisfyingly for Orlando Weeks himself, an indicator of continued progress.
♦ℜ♥  https://www.loudandquiet.com/Orlando Weeks
♦ℜ♥   https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/music/features/orlando-weeks-interview-maccabees-split-the-quickening-fatherhood-a9556586.html
Friday 12 June 2020 10:34
♦ℜ♥  https://www.standard.co.uk/go/london/music/orlando-weeks-interview-a-quickening-a4467221.html
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