The Null Device
Posts matching tags 'northern picture library'
A package from Twee Kitten arrived today; in it were two Northern Picture Library CDs today (their album Alaska and the Still Life compilation of EP tracks). They're very good, containing lots of lush, layered, skilfully crafted tracks, ranging from pop to ambient soundscapes to electronica. There's a real sense of progression there from the fey pop of the Field Mice, and an increased sophistication and maturity. (As opposed to the later Trembling Blue Stars material, which is mostly boring and weak.) Also, Annemari's voice really shines in this material, more so than in the earlier material. (Hmmm; I may well have to revise my list of favourite female vocalists.)
I also got a copy of Fosca's On Earth To Make The Numbers Up, but am not as yet overly impressed. It's mostly 80s-retro synthpop production (with extra cheese!) and too-clever-by-half, vaguely self-deprecating lyrics; a bit like Baxendale, only somewhat flatter and less varied, and it starts to grate after a while. Maybe if they made their chord progressions and sequences a bit more varied, or just made their songs shorter...
I spent part of today listening to some Northern Picture Library MP3s I found on AudioGalaxy. I must say they were good; somewhat more sparse and experimental in places than the Field Mice's output, and going to some interesting places (from the ambient trance of The Way That Stars Die to Love Song For The Dead Che, an excursion into Dubstar/Single Gun Theory territory, to the various exercises in Humblebee-style noise), along with some very nice soundscapes (Catholic Easter Colours comes to mind). There's a real sense of evolution there; it's interesting to imagine what may have happened had the crash not put paid to it.
But of course, it didn't go on like that. She left him and he put out four (and counting) Prozac-bland albums about it, never again approaching the aesthetic level or heartfelt sincerity of earlier projects.
I wonder whether any of the Northern Picture Library material is still, by any chance, in print...