New instrumental album HUM & GLOWI have new album of… instrumental Americana? Atmospheric...

New instrumental album HUM & GLOW

I have new album of… instrumental Americana? Atmospheric country? Cinematic folk? Wordless songs? Ambient guitar music? Landscape music? Anyway … It materialised over a year or so of bedroom improvising between work and life and walks to the Lea River (in northeast London). I sat in my room and played guitar and when something felt right I recorded it. I wanted it to be organic and intuitive, I didn’t want to spend too long composing or rehearsing. The first track on the album, “Out Back” (named because it made me think of sitting on a back-porch in prairies America), was also the first I got down and I recorded it off the cuff – some acoustic guitar chords that sounded good on the day, full and resonant and open, then layers of electric guitar using volume pedal and slide. It came out with a kind of looseness and simplicity that I loved, rough around the edges but also rich and atmospheric. It was reminiscent of the country music I was listening to (“Flyswatter” by Lyle Lovett was on heavy rotation). I was keen to make more of the same so I recorded several other riffs as well as pieces I had been playing around with for a few years. I experimented with effects pedals and edited the recordings to keep only the best stuff. Gradually I had 5 or so then ten or so of these instrumental pieces, these ‘wordless songs’. I enjoyed the directness of making music without words, of not having to take on the larger task of writing lyrics and shaping songs. It allowed things to flow quickly and it seemed to serve whatever emotional landscape I was going through at the time. I didn’t want to get bogged down in describing loss, I just wanted to feel it out. Some of the pieces still sounded like songs and have song structures. I guess that’s what I know so that’s what comes out. “Hum” is perhaps the least song-like – no acoustic, just electric. Most of the album has central acoustic parts with electric volume swells drifting in and out but this track is made up of only volume swells. I’d seen Daniel Lanois play live around this time and his music was an influence on this sparse electric sound. The biggest point of reference for the album as a whole was William Tyler, whose album Modern Country blew me away. It was one of those moments, I had already started recording these tracks and thinking what are they? when I heard this album and it kind of fitted. It seemed a similar aesthetic. Listening back to the album, I wonder if it’s too sparse, if there’s enough going on… But this is also what I like about it. I wanted to keep it simple and minimal. I wanted it be great background music, not grabbing for attention but offering a soundscape to be in. I’ve been told these tracks are cinematic and I would love to see them with film but even on their own I hope they can be a mood to go to in lives here and there. The cover image is a photo I took whilst travelling in Canada, near Algonquin Park in Ontario, some years ago. The scene of a deserted gas station at dusk stayed with me as I was looking at ideas. It seemed to correspond with the spaciousness and liminality of the music – an in-between place and an in-between time.  

HUM & GLOW is out on 30.11.18 on all digital platforms

Track Listing:

  • Out Back
  • Red Yellow Green
  • Hum
  • Glow
  • Not In The Negative
  • River
  • January
  • Brightside
  • Old Man Fingers

Written and recorded by Josh Geffin

Mixed by Sonny Johns

Mastered by Tom Leader

Cover design by Owen Tozer

Pre-order at Bandcamp

Listen to “Glow” on Soundcloud

Follow Josh Geffin on Spotify

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