Saturday, 22 November 2014

Track Of The Day: Port Erin - 'Makes No Difference'

Today's Track Of The Day is one from Wiltshire-based trio Port Erin, who have been favorites of this site for a while now. Their new album 'Floating Above The City' is their third, and was released a few weeks ago in October. An interview RW/FF did with the band back in 2012 can be found HERE.

Despite adding to an already overflowing pot of influences and musical shades, they have somehow managed to assimilate them all into a more definitive sound, with their songwriting more accomplished than ever before. While it journeys into many different atmospheres, 'Floating Above The City' proves to be Port Erin's most cohesive work to date, as well as their strongest. This is an album about both understanding and confusion, presenting a band seemingly at one with their place in the world, but also who show an increasing dissatisfaction with that particular realm, and the issues affecting it. Musically broad, it encompasses a heady trip through space-rock, jazz, avant-garde, funk, psychedelia, ambient, progressive and more besides to create a unique and ear-opening sound. 

The reflective lyrics are often told from a space that has the band regarding their younger selves, as main lyricist Reuben Tyghe illustrates; “Floating Above The City as a concept and title first hit me whilst trekking across Camden in Bath back in 2008 whilst having what felt like some kind of out of body experience. That classic looking down on one's self moment - I felt like I snap-shot analysed my life in 4 seconds. It's an image and feeling I often go back to. The song is like a letter to a close friend or brother. It's a song to myself I guess - an older self, talking to a younger, unaware person in his early 20's having the clich├ęd post 21 identity crisis.”

Some songs are less personal but no less philosophical as Reuben explains when discussing Makes No Difference; “It's always confused me in life that it often seems that it doesn't matter whether you use good will or plain evil to succeed. It makes no difference. There are no moral brain police. People use any means possible to get what they want.” 
Further on through the album Can't Tell (Music from the Sticky Plateaux) reinforces the themes of consideration and understanding; “When there's no way of knowing whether you're being lied to or not and it screws your mind it sucks. It's a song about that” clarifies Reuben. “And The Sticky Plateaux? That is the musical place where we'd been at whilst writing this album, pulling out tunes from the swamp of possibilities.”

Being recorded and mixed at Nine Volt Leap studio in Melksham by Dominic Bailey, and mastered by Tim Oliver at Top Cat Studios has meant that this album has very much been the product of the bands Wiltshire homeland, a part of the world the band are proud to come from. 


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