Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Erēmos - Lathe cut 7"

Erēmos is available now as a lathe cut 7" in an edition of 25.  It contains parts I and IV of Erēmos, features a hand-made cover and will come with a cdr of the entire eight track album.  The 7" costs €10 plus postage.  Message me if you'd like to reserve a copy and I can give you the full price including postage.

The lathes were cut by Graham at 2208 Records in Minneapolis, MN.


I began work on Erēmos after a couple of lengthy conversations/arguments with some friends as to the nature and definition of a hermetic lifestyle. The music evolved from that idea of secluding yourself away from society in order to concentrate on the things that really matter to you. Historically that might have been religion, magick or alchemy, but in these modern times it might equally be the person sick of the rat race, departing to the country in search of their Walden. It was argued that this equated to a turning away from life, but to me it is quite obviously a turning towards life... discarding all that is meaningless and embracing what it is that really matters to you. That may still be religion or magick or alchemy, but it might just as readily be art or music.
      
So Erēmos started as a soundtrack for the hermit. On the face of it the music is quite minimal, echoing the solitude and reclusion inherent in the traditional definition of the hermit. But as with most of my obscurist work, the undercurrent contains much to discover, just as there is more to the hermit than the dictionary definition might suggest.
     
In the process of recording, and the contemplating of meaning and the meaningless, I became interested in the idea of vanitas. Not just how it is represented in art but also how it might apply to the creation of art, and in particular the abstract music I tend to create. There is plenty of intent in the creative process, and a concerted effort to impart that meaning into the music. But once it's all done and that particular inspiration has been exorcised what are we really left with? Just another song, another piece of music.. the inspiration a fading memory.. the meaning now becoming meaningless..
     
This idea also seemed particularly germane to music creation in the digital age. With the overabundance and saturation out there I often ask myself if the world really needs another collection of my musical vanitas, but in the end the answer always seems to be that I need it... and so the drift goes on...


So in this modern age, how better to present Erēmos than as a lathe cut, a format that would seem to embody that concept of vanitas. Here is how Peter King describes them:

“Lathe cut records ARE a relatively lo-fi format. For many people this is part of their charm- they are idiosyncratic and every single one will be in some way a unique representation of your music. If you are wanting hi-fidelity records then I'm sorry to say that this is not the place for you.. They are what they are. Lathe cut records are prone to distorting in the higher frequencies, but this is offset by the fact that they can represent a deeper and stronger bass signal than vinyl records”.

For me then, the lathe cut perfectly embodies the ephemeral nature of life and art...
Eremos is a piece of art...  It means everything.. and it means nothing...


The full eight track album is available from Bandcamp: http://cathalrodgers.bandcamp.com/album/er-mos

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