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DRIFTING FALLING

Canadian musician, Damian Valles has been performing for more than a decade with bands that run the musical gambit from punk, post-hardcore and math rock to electronic and post-rock. Over the last two years he's concentrated more on solo work, creating experimental ambient and drone based soundscapes.

With several releases already under his belt (a number of limited CD-R's, a cassette, two Netlabel releases, and several compilation appearances), 'Skeleton Taxa', is Valles' seventh release to date. It's also his first "proper" full length CD and his first for the Drifting Falling imprint. Mastered by Taylor Deupree (12K), 'Skeleton Taxa' is a return to sounds first explored on his debut release, Count(r)ies (Under the Spire), but with an even stronger emphasis on instrumentation and song structure as opposed to the drawn out drones and ambient pieces he's explored in his recent work. Most of the tracks fall under five minutes and tend to have clear "parts" and passages, heavily guitar oriented with spatterings of piano, organ, field recordings and a healthy dose of percussive backdrops. The ambience and dronings are still present, but are there to fill out and carry the sound, rather than dominate the piece. Also, a new element is present on this release, the human voice, with samples and recordings of dialogue, manipulated or not, strewn throughout the course of the album. The track, "Bell And Arc", features vocals by Damian's wife, Heidi Hazelton.

Says Damian, “I feel like it's my most accomplished work to date. The concept behind Skeleton Taxa is as a collection of individual pieces that work better as a whole, a patchwork of sorts. Some of the tracks have been sitting dormant for months to years, some are reworked tracks from a previous life, and some are fresh out of the box; hints of traditional song compositions intertwined with sound collage that, somehow, seem to fit together to create a cohesive ‘entity’ or ‘body’.”

Gareth Dickson has spent the last two and a half years touring with Vashti Bunyan as her guitarist. This gave him the opportunity to work with great musicians like Devendra Banhart, Juana Molina and Coco Rosie, as well as the chance to perform in some of the great venues all over the world from The Barbican (London) to Carnegie Hall (New York). Gareth, who hails from Glasgow, Scotland, uses a steel stringed acoustic guitar and effects (delay and reverb) in his quest to recreate the ambiance of some of his more recent musical influences (Aphex Twin, Brian Eno) while drawing on the guitar techniques of some of the finger-picker guitarists of the past (Bert Jansch, Robert Johnson, Nick Drake).

"Kiku", the third release from Jon Thompson under his Oppressed by the Line moniker, was written while on holiday in Japan during July/August of 2006. The tracks were unearthed and finished during the autumn of 2008. "Kiku" follows on from the well received albums "The Cause Of The Colour" on UK label Club AC30 and 2008's "Soft Focus" (Drifting Falling). Thompson grew up in a small industrial town outside of Houston, Texas. Close to the coast, it's the sort of small American town where his only window into the bigger world of music was staying up until 1am on a Sunday night to watch 120 Minutes on MTV. Perhaps it was this, as much as anything else, that led him to pick up a guitar and seek solace amongst the rhythm and the sound. After a visit to the Tate Modern in London, he christened his project Oppressed by the Line; named after a quote on a placard under a painting of a blue void by Yves Klein. The quote read, 'I adopt the cause of the colour oppressed by the line'.


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