Manchester band Cult Party have announced their first album in two years, And Then There Was This Sound, set for release on June 9th on Manchester's Icecapades Records (Slowcoaches, Joey Fourr, Sprinters, Sex Hands...)
Beginning life as the as the bedroom project of multi-disciplinary artist Leo Robinson, a specialist in the kind of hushed, evocative recordings which bring to mind the intimacy of well loved acts like The Microphones & Thanksgiving. Cult Party have quickly blossomed into one of the most respected bands working out of Manchester at the moment.
Recorded last year with a close knit group of friends, including Moshi Moshi records signee Kiran Leonard, 'And Then There Was this Sound' follows on from Leo's last full length effort, the long sold out, 'Eternal Love & The Death of Everything'. This most recent album was composed and recorded at the same time as Leo, who also works as a visual artist, was busy readying artwork for his debut solo show at the Tiwani Gallery, which is due to open in central London later this year.
With his creativity at a peak, and ideas humming around his head, Leo and his band have produced a rich follow-up album with it's eyes very much to the sky. Brimming with energy, inventiveness and positivity, It is a master-class in taut song writing and economical arrangement.
Buoyed by the assistance of some of the best musicians in Manchester, Leo's guitar playing delivers a transcendental, meditative quality, adding weight to a suite of beautifully arranged and generously orchestrated songs. Alongside a minimal set-up of guitar,vocals, organ, cello, violin and percussion, Leo's baritone croon intones a sequence of emotionally expressive lyrics, veering from free-associative poetry to intimate confessionals. All of this adds up to a wonderfully warm and amiable record, which invites you into the world of its creator.
Of the writing process behind the LP, Leo says:
"I started writing (LP highlight and twenty minute epic) Hurricane Girl as a teenager, about 7 years ago now. It was only about 2 minutes long then and I think that version ended up on a cassette i made that almost no one bought with a weird skeleton on the cover. From there it kind of grew into this thing. I kept coming back to this fluid narrative about the weather spirits, and the weather as a consequence of sentient action as opposed to just random occurrence. I pieced together ideas from all over the place - a melody borrowed from my friend Patrick's song, a lyric inspired by Mississippi John Hurt, some bits from various choral music and Hindu chanting practices. The version on the record is exactly 20 minutes long but I'm not sure it will ever be completely finished."
RIYL: Thanksgiving, Sufjan Stevens, The Microphones, Daniel Johnson, Richard Dawson, K Records, Laraaji, Lonnie Holley, Mississippi John Hurt.
Released June 9th on Limited Edition Vinyl and Digital Platforms.
Manchester, Saturday June 9h - St Emmanuel Church, Didsbury - Album Launch
- Folk & Singer-Songwriter