For me this is a longed for sister album to Piano Magic’s swansong ‘Closure’, often that album strayed a bit too far into straight up love lorn rock for my tastes, but this album steers Glen’s output back into the arcane haunted delights of earlier Piano Magic. No matter what the title of the band this showcases Glen’s unique musical approach and let’s hope he continues to create music whatever he decides to name its output.
Favorite track: Skeletons.
'Ombilical,' 10 track CD album in beautiful letterpressed Kraft Duplex Fremont Folder *or* Arigato Pak with gold eyelet, red raffia twine and printed inlay. Whilst stocks last, comes with 10 track CDR of accompanying tracks, 'Prostheses.' Note : brown sleeves now sold out - lovely white ones only available.
Includes unlimited streaming of Ombilical + Prostheses (bonus disc)
via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
Textile Ranch (named after a 1985 instrumental by Felt) is the unfeathered nom-de-plume Second Language founder, Glen Johnson, invariably reserves for his more playful experiments with electronic music. The 2L label itself was launched back in 2009 with a crowd-funded Textile Ranch release, ‘Tombola’ but the name itself harks back to 2000, when Static Caravan released the clear vinyl 7”, ‘Huit Oiseaux Bruns Dans La Nuit Blanche (Modèle Réduit).’ Further lowkey releases peppered the next few years on the since-retired independents, Audraglint, Lykill, Very Friendly and Make Mine Music.
‘Ombilical,’ (French for ‘umbilical’ no less) could be considered an exercise in, literally, navel-gazing, as it finds Johnson far removed from the introspective guitar-led songsmithery of his former group, Piano Magic and immersed in his love of electronic composition. By his own admission, ‘Ombilical’ serves foremost as a sonic toybox for Johnson, its often disharmonic, looped polyrhythms are inspired greatly by the Fluxus art movement of the 60’s and 70’s which emphasized the artistic process over the finished product. As he explains, “I don’t consider anything here to be finished. There’s a Meccano process to what I’m doing – ideally, I could, effectively, add to the tracks indefinitely until they no longer remotely resemble the starting point.”
Originally intended for release in 2018 and then again in 2019 (the letter-pressed sleeves bear either year accordingly), unhappy with the results, Johnson junked at least 2 prior versions of the album before settling on this ultimate collection. Guests here include Amanda Butterworth (aka Mücha), Oliver Cherer (Dollboy/Gilroy Mere), Ola Szmidt and Franck Alba (ex-Piano Magic).
‘Ombilical’ comes as an Arigato Pak, courtesy of Stumptown Printers, Oregon, letter-pressed by New North Press, London. It is left to the purchaser’s discretion as to where (or if) to cut the attached red raffia umbilical cord. Initial copies are accompanied by a 10 track bonus disc of synchronous recordings, ‘Prostheses.’
This is SL038.
released May 8, 2019
All music, words and vocals Glen Johnson except :
Vocals on iv and vi – Amanda Butterworth
Guitar on ix – Franck Alba
Trumpet on v – Oliver Cherer
Backing vocals and flute on ii – Ola Szmidt
Sampled voices – Amanda, Kristina Pulejkova
Mastered by Antony Ryan at RedRedPaw
Cover letterpressed by New North Press
Insert printed by Words & Pictures
Artwork/concept – Glen Johnson
CD layout – Jeff Teader
Thanks to Maria
supported by 43 fans who also own “Ombilical + Prostheses (bonus disc)”
Stunning album, beginning to end, as usal... Favourites changing, listening after listening. Right now: Dead to me now (highest possibile volume mandatory) and A few scattered hours, perfect initial track for any respectable award winning movie. zorba72