Praedormitium is the third part of a loose trilogy of albums that Polypores (Stephen James Buckley) has recorded for Castles in Space. Following in the garlanded pathways of Flora (2019) and the universally acclaimed Azure (2020), the expectations for Praedormitium are running extremely high. Stephen continues the odyssey he started on Flora and refined on Azure to deliver an album not only full of his usual depth and invention, but built to exist within that enclave of melody and optimism that typifies the Castles in Space catalogue. The album spins a dizzying 12 track suite of inspirational modular synthesizer pieces built from Stephen’s instinctive and seemingly limitless free flowing creativity.
He writes, “In my third album for Castles In Space, I felt that I should pursue the themes of the previous two by exploring an imaginal place - and decided that the place between wakefulness and sleep was an ideal location. If the previous two albums were Earth and Water, then this album is Ether. The album was recorded around Christmas 2020. The twinkling lights and frosted ground lent an unexpected air of yearning and melancholy to the music, an emotive thread running through it which, despite being unintended, must have been lurking in my subconscious somewhere and brought out through induction of these states through various means. Like the previous albums, it is very much a journey. Only this time you wake up at the end…”
The incredibly rewarding partnership with artist Nick Taylor is also continued on this release as Nick (as he did with his artwork for Flora and Azure), translates Stephen’s cosmic wonderment into breathtaking landscapes, trippy symbolism and arcane wisdom. The music and artwork complement each other perfectly, being two elements of the same thing and born from a restless, seeking desire to blow your mind.
Stephen James Buckley (Polypores) paints music with modular synthesizers, drawing influence from ambient, new age, and experimental electronics. His music soars, bubbles, crackles, and soothes, in ever-shifting, immersive cosmic landscapes, hyperreal dream environments and sonic sculptures. Defining a specific area of synthesizer based music as very much his own, his popularity has resulted in a brace of sold-out releases on labels such as Ian Boddy’s DiN, Polytechnic Youth, Behind The Sky, Miracle Pond Records, Frequency Domain, Woodford Halse, Golden Ratio Frequencies, and Concréte Tapes.
Uncut magazine described his 2022 album Hyperincandescent as "intensely absorbing, ever shifting through static squiggles, warm blooms of texture, bioluminescent glimmers, and rattling chimes... like a dance of fireflies in the dark".
Polypores will be promoting Praedormitium at live shows at Bedford Esquires on the 11th February (With Warrington Runcorn New Town Development Plan and Field Lines Cartographer) and at The Cumberland Arms in Newcastle on 25th February (with Field Lines Cartographer).
STAFF COMMENTSBarry says: There aren't many folks that do this business better than Stephen 'Polypores' Buckley, and I can tell you that while his skills are many and varied, it's (for my money) the twinkling, paddling arpeggios and woozy new-age haze that give the best impression of how overwhelmingly immersive Buckley's sound can be. This is among the best of his career, and a beautiful looking package too.
1. Frost And Moss
3. Pure Colours And Light Charged Clouds
4. Growing Crystals
7. Nonsensical And Fragmented
8. Loss Of Ego Boundaries
11. Our Tiny Orbits
12. And Slowly Open Your Eyes