Recorded in a cabin in remote Finnish Lapland during one week in December 2014, ‘Pale Ground’ is the second collaboration between Andrew Phillips and Jon Buckland. Following on from ‘Winter’s City’ (2013), which was recorded in the wake of a visit to Helsinki, the UK pair decided to embark on a trip to more Northerly territory, and to record in situ. Arriving without any set intentions as to style, form or theme, what emerged was a naturally unfolding response to the landscape, and subsequent experience of remoteness. At times the music dwells in an interior space, comforting respite from the unforgiving temperatures, yet confining. On other occasions the sound is more reflective of an unfamiliar vastness, which was found to be both wondrous and disconcerting at once. The landscape liminal, and with defining features nulled by snow.
Haunting washes of melodic and abstract piano with guitar are layered with processed strings, percussion and synths, tempered by slowly evolving phrases of chimes, creating an ambience that moves toward the darker end of the experimental neo classical/electronic music spectrum.
Recorded in a linear fashion throughout the seven days, ‘Pale Ground’ is an intimate and evocative rendering of an experience of place, as well as something of a conversation with the ‘Skull Beneath the Skin’ of the landscape itself, the hidden history and spirit of the terrain.
Jon Buckland currently lives in Brighton on the south coast of England, and devotes his time to combining an appreciation of film, and the written word.
Andrew Phillips recently relocated to Edinburgh, Scotland, where he works as a visual artist, musician and Art Psychotherapist, his practice largely devoted to exploring notions of the numinous within landscape. In June 2015 Andrew’s debut album ‘The Feather That Tips the Scales’ was released, also available via bandcamp.