Title - 'Human Music' (Vinyl)
Artist - Solomon Grey
For those not in the know, Solomon Grey is the band and incorporates composers Tom Kingston & Joe Wilson.
Joe Wilson and Tom Kingston don’t draw a line between the music they make as a band and the scores they compose for film and TV. Or if they do, it’s a faint one.
As Solomon Grey, the classically-trained long-time friends have a sensual, cinematic sound that is their calling card for both, a beguiling blend of synths and orchestration that can evoke any emotion, capture tiny moments in time and summon scenes both real and imagined.
Fresh from their latest big-budget, TV-screen success as composers of the soundtrack to BBC One’s 'The Last Post' - Peter Moffat’s lavish, six-part, 1960s-set drama - Solomon Grey are back being a band, but only their focus has shifted.
Human Music, their second album (and here for review as a glorious vinyl record), is as powerful and ambitious, as visual and visceral as their sought-after soundtrack work.
1. The Weight
2. Closed Door
3. Wonderful World
6. Inside Outside
7. Willow House
10. The Game
11. In Love
Listening to Solomon Grey's music for the first time, you might think that given such tracks as both "The Weight" and "Elements" that Grey’s soundscapes are the noise an orchestra would make if it was led by the Slash!
But you would be wrong - kinda sorta. As we've since discovered, the album was actually made partly as a reaction to the passing of Wilson’s mother, and so the songs where singing is involved, incorporated, well, they are fittingly for the lyrical subject matter, both mournful and rather bleak at times also.
Captured through soundscapes of various degrees of raging electronica, the tracks on their sophomore album all speak for themselves. The layers to be found here in each and every song are amazing and it has to be said that there's not much else out there today that sounds quite like these guys and what they are doing.
Such a stand out track would be "Gaslight", which is a song that starts out with just a stoic moment or two of piano, before a thinly veiled vocal comes in. From there, and as it builds, it's musical backdrop coming to the fore more and more, just over halfway through and it's suddenly challenged for the spotlight by some pounding vocals - that then hanker on back to whispers.
With instrumental tracks their collective go to also, moments such as both "Clouds" and "Departed" are transcendent works of musical art, masterpieces even. Mined for as much worldly emptiness as possible, given the aforementioned subject matter, these electric soundwaves make Human Music one of my Top 10 albums of 2018 thus far.
Vinyl Purchase Link
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