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MP3 $9.90

02/22/2010 823566497820 

 


Based in Manchester, Last Harbour are an expansive collective featuring an array of classical instrumentation as well as guitar, bass and drums. Their new album ‘Volo’ was co-produced by the band and Richard Formby (Wild Beasts, Herman Dune, Spacemen 3, Dakota Suite). From dusty laments to doom-filled rock, from starkly beautiful duets to drifting clouds of looped noise, there’s always an intensity that strikes hard. It's a highly original record featuring the band’s strongest songs and most creative arrangements of their career to date. The band's previous album 'Dead Fires and the Lonely Spark' (2008) was recorded to tape in a week with the band in full control. In deliberate contrast, 'Volo' was recorded piece by piece over a year in various locations and an early decision was taken that Formby alone would mix the results. That freed up the band's songwriting process. Very few of the songs were fully formed before recording began and many took shape and direction through the process of multi-layering instruments, loop creation and shifting arrangements. The album’s title refers to a type of early 20th Century child's toy Ouija board and to the Latin word for 'a desire' or 'a will'. Both are a good fit. By relinquishing control of the record, Last Harbour have created a space for the unseen and unheard to become realised. Singer Kevin Craig may give form to those who populate his lyrics but it's unclear who is guiding the glass towards the letters that spell out the message. From the obsessive urges of the opening 'Mount Analogue' (“I'm a receiver/I hear your transmission”) to the impending collapse of 'If They're Right' (“She has one foot in the ocean/And the other at the threshold”) that closes the album, he brings the characters to life, also conjuring their images in his ornate woodcuts that adorn the artwork of this beautifully packaged record. Once recording was finished, the band handed over mixing duties to co-producer Richard Formby, who worked with an open remit and no instructions, placing a deliberate loss of control at the centre of the artistic process. Formby’s only brief was that he should mix the record as he saw fit - whatever he came up with would be released without any further interference from the band. The result, born first of abandonment and then reconciliation, is 'Volo'. 

Tracklist

  1. #1 (i)

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  2. #2 Mount Analogue

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  3. #3 Sunken Bells

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  4. #4 The Blood Is A Compass

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  5. #5 All Of My Triumphs Are Written In Your Hand

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  6. #6 (ii)

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  7. #7 The Loom

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  8. #8 The Weave

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  9. #9 Don't Fall

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  10. #10 (iii)

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  11. #11 Thread By Thread

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  12. #12 The Fever

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  13. #13 Chosen Vessels

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  14. #14 (iv)

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  15. #15 Lights

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  16. #16 If They're Right

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Single MP3s for this release are $0.99.

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