It was mutual friend Alex Knight, of Sabresonic and Fatcat Records fame, who connected me with Glaswegian silversmith and sound-designer, Clair Crawford. Clair had recently reactivated her record label, Hot Gem, with a long-player, Earth Mothers, and a trio of E.P.s one of which, Body Blossom Revelations, I reviewed. The release featured remixes from talented and likeminded friends, which put it the in the orbit of cult electronica imprints such as Castles In Space. Clair also hosts a monthly radio show, called The Sonic Book Club. on CampFR. An experimental broadcast which mixes music with spoken word. Personally, I’m a sucker for that sort of stuff, and was both honoured and excited when Clair asked me to take part. It’s so great to start a new year with something new. Here, however, Clair has taken a moment to look back, and compile a few of her favourite albums from 2022.
Super selections & wonderful words by CLAIR.
Flore Laurentienne / Volume II (RVNG Intl & Costume Records)
Aka Mathieu David Gagnon. Erin Brown at Someone Great PR sent me this, possibly my new favourite artist of recent times. It’s like a modern twist on old technicolour film scores, seriously sensuous, romantic and utterly timeless.
Favourite track: Voiles
Voice Actor / Sent From My Telephone (Stroom TV)
Think I spotted this via the guys at Boomkat. I really love adding in short vocal pieces to mixes. Tese are sheer fire. I adore the accents. It’s like little extracts of evocative film noir. A truly unique release.
Favourite track: Beautiful Burglar
Elizabeth Crompton / Problems Of Other Minds (Werra Fox mama)
Elizabeth blew me away in 2021 with her heartbreaking track ‘Same Thing Still’, so I was more than a little excited to wrap my ears around this new release, and it did not disappoint – absolute emotional devastation, it’s a proper tear jerker. Elizabeth’s voice is so fragile, but strong at the same time, it’s a dichotomy of sonics if that makes sense, really she deserves to be huge.
Favourite track: I Keep Getting Better
JD Twitch / Polyphonic Cosmos: A Beginners Guide To Japan In The 80s (1981 – 86) (Cease & Desist)
Keith put years of work into curating this and it shows. it’s a real time travel tardis. I’ve never been to Japan, but this album set up such a perfect image of Japan in the `80s for me.
Favourite track: Hiroyuki Namba / Tropical Exposition
Zenya aka Polypores / New Earth Catalogue
A moniker of Polypores. Stephen J Buckley, is one of my favourite artists and people in the experimental music community. A huge talent. A proper synth guru. This release is so playful and fun, like floating through jewels in space Perfect games music.
Favourite track: Arcadia
Clarice Jensen / Esthesis (Fatcat Records / 130701)
The sweet kittens over at Fatcat / 130701 sent me this, and well it is what the titles claim to be – every emotion to the fullest.
My favourite track is ‘Joy’, which is like being wrapped in silk ribbons on a warm breezy Indian summer’s day, closely followed by ‘Love’ That one hurts a little bit too much to listen too often to though. It’s so intense!
Misha Sultan / Roots (Hivemind Records)
Marco Tiara at Hivemind sent me this. I really love their releases. There’s so much going on in this, but it works perfectly. A real beautiful tapestry of warm psychedelia, rooted deep in the Hinterlands. Multi-instrumentalist, Siberian artist Misha is a proper talent.
Favourite track: Kwango
CLAIR’s music can be found over at Bandcamp. The photography which accompanies the field recordings central to CLAIR’s creative process can be purchased, along with other merchandise, via her Groove Inspired store.