Monday, 10 March 2014

The tracks of Traces: 1-6

While I'd like to think the music of Traces can be thrown open to interpretation, each piece does have its own mini-history, and here are some factoids about the first six tracks on the album...

“Awakening” was the first full song that I composed, and in my mind it was always going to be the first track. The title was initially just a working title, named after one of my own paintings, but it stuck. The song drifts in, like sinking into a deep sleep and subsequent dream – and we get the reversal of this at the end of the track, awakening to the sound of rain outside. This was the only track that I was still working on right up until the end of the process. I’d probably still be tinkering with it, had I not declared the album complete back in January!

“After Dark” was originally called “Round Every Corner” and is perhaps the most unusual track on the album. I wanted a very cinematic ambience to it, thinking about the blurred lights and colours of cities at night. It’s eventual title was borrowed from one of Haruki Murakami’s novels.

“Shadows Past” was another early composition, but was also the one that went through the most evolutions. As with many tracks, the title came first, and I experimented with several approaches until I found the right one. 

“Sea View” is the first track that reflects the coastal imagery of the album cover. As I previously explained, the sea is a common dream theme, and indicative of our emotions. It’s also one of my favourite places to sit and reflect, gather thoughts or just chill out. Hopefully that comes across in the tranquil air of this piece.

“Traces” is the most reflective song on the album. The first version was actually a short, abstract piece, but this wasn’t right for the title track of the album – which had been in my mind for a while. I was also working on a demo called “Dreaming Through Your Eyes” which was slow (painfully slow!), but I really liked the percussion and lead melody, so I merged the two and speeded it up – and the final track came into being!

“Autumn Colours” was written around the same time as “Awakening”. As a synaesthete, colour is important to my music, and the colours of this track to me were the warm tones and golden light of an autumn afternoon. 

Traces is out now on Bandcamp.

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