Mute Records Announce Land Observations Debut Album

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Once bound for the next intergalactic ride across the Kosmiche horizon as a former member of the Krautrock imbued Appliance, James Brooks subsequent solo efforts under the appellation of Land Observations, have taken a more earthy route. His debut EP, Roman Roads, was a travail through the old ruins of and worn routes left behind by our conquerors. Using only a guitar and an array of foot-pedals and effects, Brooks resonant and atmospheric wanderings worked their loop-tastic magic. Recommended by GIITTV at the time and interviewed by myself, I summarised his record as:

‘Using only his trusty 6-string electric guitar for company, Brooks creates suggestive instrumentals from multi-layered and repetitive loops; played over a diaphanous, atavistic pastoral motorik rhythm.

His arch musings and indolent gestured guitar riffs bring to mind the ‘No Pussyfooting’ collaboration work of Eno and Fripp, and the more serene atmospheric textures of Acid Mother Temple’s Kawabata Makoto.’

 

News now reaches us from Mute records that Brooks is releasing a follow-up full-length album on September 3rd. Full details and track list can be found below.

 

Mute are pleased to announce the signing of Land Observations, and news of the debut release, Roman Roads IV – XI, out on 3 September 2012.

Land Observations is the solo project of James Brooks, which debuted at the Short Circuit presents Mute festival at the Roundhouse in May 2011.

Brooks’ previous band, Appliance, released four critically acclaimed albums on Mute before disbanding. Since then, Brooks has developed his visual and audio art with various shows across the UK, North America and Europe (his current exhibition, The Information Exchange, is at Domobaal, London, WC1 until August 2012). Throughout, music has remained a constant, with Brooks now connecting his conceptual approaches to instrumental musical compositions.

Attempts to develop a new project alongside the visual art meant that Brooks did a lot of home recording at his flat in Hackney, East London. Land Observations, developed out of an interest in the former Roman roads that lay just a short walk from his front door – roads of communication and conquest that stretch from the old City of London and out across parts of Britain, Europe and beyond.

Land Observations sees Brooks exploring the power of minimalism via layered, repetitive electric VI string guitar to create warm, evocative instrumentals. Although Brooks spent considerable time researching Roman Roads – with each of the compositions responding to the psychogeography of an individual road – this isn’t just an historical project, or an attempt to look only into the past. There is an obvious fascination with Roman Roads as man made structures, with their bold lines carving through the landscape, creating an album that’s a reflection on the broader ideas of travel, momentum and progress.

Roman Roads IV – XI is released on Mute on CD, vinyl and download, with packaging featuring original drawings by Brooks. The album was recorded at the Bridge and Tunnel Mobile, Berlin and engineered and mixed by Mark Bihler and James Brooks.

 

Live dates will be announced shortly.

 

ROMAN ROADS IV-XI

Before the Kingsland Road

Aurelian Way

From Nero’s Palace

Via Flaminia

Appian Way

The Chester Road

Portway

Battle Of Watling Street

 

God is in the TV is an online music and culture fanzine founded in Cardiff by the editor Bill Cummings in 2003. GIITTV Bill has developed the site with the aid of a team of sub-editors and writers from across Britain, covering a wide range of music from unsigned and independent artists to major releases.