James Blackshaw The Glass Bead Game
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- by James Blackshaw ~ The Cloud of Unknowing ~ $12.58
- Released: May 17, 2010
- Originally Released: 2010
- Label: Young God Records
Spin - p.82"[Blackshaw melds] his mesmeric, masterful technique with cello and violin contributions from members of experimental folk group Current 93..."
Pitchfork (Website) - "The album opens with a stunner in 'Cross'. Blackshaw's dexterous fingerstyle guitar playing sets down a rhythmic and harmonic foundation as the harmonium drones in the background."
Signal To Noise (magazine) (p.68) - "Blackshaw's sparkling acoustic guitar glides gracefully through 'Cross,' the textures deepened by John Contreras and Joolie Wood's strings and Lavinia Blackwall's wordless vocals -- a beautiful and stirring start to a recording that's never less than mesmerizing."
Song previews provided courtesy of iTunes
Personnel: James Blackshaw (12-string guitar, piano, harmonium); Lavina Blackwell, Lavinia Blackwall (vocals); Joolie Wood (violin, flute, clarinet); John Contreras (cello).
Recording information: No Recording Studio (11/2008).
Continuing his unique blend of Philip Glass and John Fahey, James Blackshaw moves away from his earlier solo releases with the addition of a trio of backing musicians who add exciting new textures to his music. Piano, guitar, violin, flute, clarinet, cello, and percussion intertwine into delicate filigrees of sound. A rare vocal performance, by guest Lavinia Blackwall, adds an entirely new texture to one track, the ghostly and yearning "Cross." Other highlights include "Key," "Fix," "Bled," and the epic closer "Arc," one of the most powerful and affecting pieces of music Blackshaw has so far composed. This may be James Blackshaw's finest work.
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