French modern-classical quartet astrïd return on May 10th with the first part of a new release entitled A Porthole.
Conceptually the two records work in unison, focusing on portholes into the abyss, with part one delving into the depths of the deep sea. The tracks are named after various strains of seaweed, the artwork depicting dark waves and uncertainty. Part two will follow in a years time and will turn its attention to the night sky and constellations.
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Limited edition of 300 copies. Aqua Blue vinyl, housed in a heavyweight 350gsm, matte-finished sleeve.
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A Porthole continues astrïd’s signature style of billowing guitars, strings and woodwind. Each element intertwined with another, linked perfectly together through restrained jazz-tinged percussion. 2017’s highly-acclaimed release ‘Through the Sparkle’ with renowned pianist Rachel Grimes (of Rachels) set the bar extremely high for this release but astrïd have matched the depth, melody and quality of that record here.
Part one of this journey features some sublime compositions with Cyril Secq’s expressive and bold guitar playing carrying the pieces into chamber music territory, joined seamlessly by a variety of other instruments that swell and soar and fit perfectly into the story being told. Everything seems to have its place, nothing is overplayed or out of step here, there is an organic nature to the way this quartet plays and interacts with one another as melodies circle back and fade away in the same beautiful breath.
A Porthole is a deeply charming record, exercising glorious, nuanced refrain and offering a sort of hope rarely found in music these days.
Recorded and mixed by Cyril Secq at Goulephar Studio, Nantes, France
Mastered by Harris Newman at Grey Market, Montreal, Canada
Original Monotype artwork and sleeve design by Richard Knox
"The opening minutes establish the template: the chamber violin balanced by the post-rock guitar. In the hands of these performers, the two are natural friends." A Closer Listen
"the whole album is a masterclass in restraint. It all makes A Porthole an absolute delight, and an album perfect for losing entire evenings exploring its soundscapes and textures."
The Sound Not The Word
Gizeh is an independent label based in Manchester, UK. Focusing on a fiercely DIY ethic, Gizeh has grown with it's artists
over the years to form a strong community of musicians and artists from around the world. We have no care for genres or pigeon-holes - simply the noise of harmony and the harmony of noise and the inspiration and spirit of the people who are making that noise....more
supported by 11 fans who also own “A Porthole (I)”
This album makes me feel strong pulls of somberness and remorse, but a sense of maturity to it, as if it's but a distant scar now and am ready to move on.
The choice of slow moving cellos is very welcome on this album and makes the full piece feel full. Bombchu Link
supported by 10 fans who also own “A Porthole (I)”
Slow Meadow's S/T LP debut is a deftly layered recording. It presents a melancholic yet serene tonality. The tracks and their languid flow are wrapped in classical ambient colors. Of note is the gorgeous cello of Aimee Norris and the violin accompaniment of Andy Shelton, Joshua Ello, and Alia Gonzales. Nice introduction. Brilliant debut. Gary Figueroa