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SL10 Richard Moult Celestial King For A Year

Composer, painter and poet Richard Moult is one protean cultural practitioner. The Newcastle-born author of innumerable songs, miscellaneous musical settings, field recordings and works for solo piano and classical ensembles, with a clutch of beneath-the-radar-albums and EPs to his name, Richard is also known for his work with the group Far Black Furlong and for collaborations with the David Tibet’s apocalyptic folk mavens Current 93, Irish psych-folk band United Bible Studies and Dorset sound sculptors Plinth. Informed as much by landscape atmosphere, folkloric myth and arcane symbolism as by canonical composers such as Franz Schubert, J.S. Bach, Johannes Brahms or Ivor Gurney, Richard is a serious but never pretentious artist (he once described the central tenets of his work as: “God, nature, redemption”). His most recent album, Ethe (deadslackstring), was a solo piano work recorded in St. Leonards Parish Church, Hastings; it was described by Shindig magazine as, “achingly lovely… it’s of the land, of the elements, of the world.” Currently resident in remote north-west Scotland, Richard’s latest album, his debut for Second Language, is a three-movement suite of stark, immersive, beauty. Celestial King For A Year began life as a work for string quintet but was gradually pared back to a numinous essence. “I wanted to write something spacious and to my mind, completely spiritual”, says Richard. “I took as my influence very early Christian chant ('Old Roman' - circa 6th Century AD), but I wanted to strip the work down even more, doing away with any rhythmic and harmonic embellishments and creating something that seems quite static, quite still. I then expanded the work to include two extra movements for voice, strings and electronics.” The suite’s opening movement was recorded at Tony Wakeford's London studio, with Ben Sansom on violin and Alexandria Lawrence on viola, while Jessica Constable’s voice on the second movement was captured at her studio in France. The third movement was created entirely by Richard at his home in Scotland. The album is named after a poem of Richard’s and refers to the seasonal cycle and how offerings were once made to the fields in order to propitiate the gods. While the music doesn’t seek to literally describe any specific ritual/seasonal fest, it was Richard’s aim to, “try and presence a general 'pagan' sense of the sacred”. That he has succeeded magisterially in his aspiration is evinced by even a cursory listen to this haunting, compelling album.

Track List

Part One
Part Two
Part Three

Limited edition of 300 copies • SOLD OUT

 


Video: Anne Wallace http://butterflyweaverpress.wordpress.com/

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