Plans Drawn In Pencil

Morr Music morr 068-cd
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Maybe the pencil would be an excellent image. As the softest of all writing implement, it is always close to vanishing, to being wiped or erased. Maybe this album, if it were a painting, it would not be oil on canvas but rather a pencil drawing. White on grey. Reduced and open at first sight. Rich in details and playful on closer examination. A lot happens within seclusion. It happens between the sounds of this fourth album that Antony Ryan and Robin Saville have recorded for Morr Music. A short and friendly first encounter in 1998, a cooperation for an EP which became an album. A long friendship has come of it, between a band and a label, between isan and Morr Music.
Antony Ryan and Robin Saville did not write any lists for plans drawn in pencil and did not made any plans either. They were concerned with nothing but sounds. They sent them back and forth between their homes in England. They layered soundtracks on top of the other, activated filters, went through synthesizers and systems (analogue and digital ones) looking for sounds. Firstly, each one of the two on his own. In a ping-pong-manner. And in a second step both of them together. Two artists and their machines. “Sometimes there is a melody in your head first, the other time you find it in a synthesizer. You find it in dialogue with the equipment”, says Robin Saville, one half of isan. "Sometimes I had to teach my machines to generate the melody" says Antony Ryan, the other half of isan
Robin Saville also says that their music is about making difficult sounds easy to listen to. About the thin line between conceptual serious music and pop, between minimal and melody.
The opener “look and yes” is a soft searching, a warm murmur. Long notes standing in space alone, environmental music. “road runner” is a shy pop-pearl whose gleam becomes more sparkling with time. “amber button” is the most rhythmic track of a quiet album, “working in dust” is music in cinemascope, in some ways reminiscent of the Krautrock pioneers neu! or young Brian Eno.

ISAN: Plans Drawn In Pencil

Look And Yes Isan 2' 56''
Cinnabar Isan 3' 25''
Yttrium Isan 4' 12''
Roadrunner Isan 3' 28''
Ship Isan 4' 14''
Immoral Architecture Isan 3' 35''
Amber Button Isan 3' 25''
Fivetofour, Tentoeleven Isan 2' 49''
Corundum Isan 3' 26''
Stickland Isan 3' 43''
Seven Mile Marker Isan 3' 42''
Working In Dust Isan 3' 49''
Ruined Feathers Isan 2' 24''

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