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ERLAND COOPER

Erland Cooper

Carve The Runes Then Be Content With Silence?

    Erland Cooper’s new album Carve the Runes Then Be Content With Silence is set for release in June 2024 – 3 years from the day the only master tape was planted deep into the Orkney soil.

    The album is a recording of Cooper’s brand new three-movement composition for solo violin and string ensemble. The work marks the centenary of celebrated Orkney poet George Mackay Brown, as 2021 marks 100 years since his birth.

    Inspired by natural landscapes and ruminating on time, hope, community and patience, the sole recording of the work – on ¼ inch magnetic tape, with the digital files permanently deleted – has been planted to grow and be nurtured or “recomposed” by the earth, before being exhumed and released in three years’ time. Whilst Cooper will not be unearthing the tape until 2024, he has left a trail for anyone to search and find it if they wish. A map with clues to the location of the planting site will be released via his digital platforms. If the planted tape is found, Erland will invite the discoverer to his studio to embark on a journey together for the treasured first listen. It will then be released exactly as it sounds from the earth.

    Erland Cooper says, “Music can so often feel undervalued and for some, being unable to perform live has at times felt like being buried. When an idea forms there is often an urge to share it as quickly as it develops but like spotting a bird, I want to let this fly and land in its own place and time. The work is one part remembrance and one part celebration of a landmark time.” He adds: “The material on the tape may erode naturally, disintegrate and create drops of silence or the peaty soil may preserve it perfectly well. It may or may not get better with age. I may or may not fall out of favour with my composition. Any alterations to the sound and music [when it comes out of the earth] will be reincorporated into the pages of a new score and live performance, as orchestral articulations.”


    Erland Cooper

    Folded Landscapes

      Groundbreaking Scottish composer, producer and multi-instrumentalist Erland Cooper shares his ambitious fourth studio album Folded Landscapes. Known for merging modern classical-electronic music with evocative storytelling and conceptual art, Erland shares his urgent observation on climate change, temperature and time. This poignant chamber string work figuratively and literally thaws over seven movements, unfolding with electronics, poetry, soprano, piano, harpsichord, field recordings and samples. The work features Scottish Ensemble, UK Poet Laureate Simon Armitage and other voices including activist Greta Thunberg, multi-award winning conservationist Dara McNaulty and & visual artist Norman Ackroyd. Field recordings of the natural world include the California wildfires and crashing glaciers.

      The creative process mimicked the rising temperature of the piece from glacial to a threatening burn - musicians were recorded in subzero temperatures and the audio master tape was sun-burnt on the hottest day in UK history. The heat, moisture, salt and sunlight worked its way into the fabric of the tape, which has been mixed into the finished work, underscoring the work with an unsettling burn that crackles and pops.

      A percentage of the copyright share will go to Brian Eno’s EarthPercent charity as a beautiful way of embedding the planet as a stakeholder in musical creativity and raising money for climate/environmental organisations. The Earth’s share of the song - and its income - will be directed to EarthPercent to redistribute to organisations tackling the climate crisis. Folded Landscapes is released on Mercury KX.

      STAFF COMMENTS

      Barry says: The wonderful Erland Cooper presents his newest suite of soaring instrumentals and warming storytelling, this time focusing on the environmental crisis and including prominent climate change voices and pertinent field recordings. It's huge and beautiful, and exactly what we'd expect from Cooper.

      TRACK LISTING

      Movement 1 [6:42]
      Movement 2 [5:03]
      Movement 3 [3:53]
      Movement 4 [7:09]
      Movement 5 [6:51]
      Movement 6 [3:57]
      Movement 7 [9:01]


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