Kemper Norton claim that their new record is the shadowed version of their first, taking its sound and transposing it into the night. 'Loor' traverses different genres that contribute to an overall pastoral feel: in an attempt to give an omniscient view of city life, they use found sounds, communal vocals and primitive folk music. 'Loor' means "moon" in Cornish, so stay up late and have a listen.
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- Loor by Kemper Norton
I had the pleasure to briefly meet Dave from Kemper Norton a few months ago in Oxfordshire, a truly nice chap and also the only musician I've ever seen moved to tears by another artists music, in this case the astonishing Cindytalk - I wasn't far behind him to be honest. His gentle character comes over in his curious and intimate music, a tender and tentative poet and sonic sculptor of what I'd term as rural psychedelic electronic balladry. Wearing a large weird suit.
Loosely affiliated with eerie circuit-bending cider guzzlers Hacker Farm, Kemper Norton produces equally haunting and unusual pieces but marked with a softer, more reflective edge, touching on the inscrutable auras of local history and its dark legends, all those secret places, lost stories and crepuscular moods that creep through his unsettling but irresistible tunes. He likes to sometimes weave amongst his nocturnal rumblings a softly-sung narrative or amorphous ghostly intonations. Due to the delivery you cannot help thinking of Coil at their least harsh and in the flowering, brittle arrangements something of the mystery of acts such as Cyclobe, Pete Um or Sam McLoughlin's wan-lit weird-folk projects.
Kemper Norton makes for a fascinating listen, there is forever something sinister and enticing lurking beneath what is essentially pastoral dark ambient music made on minimal equipment. You can feel it bubbling around the edges, this music infused with such a panoramic array of colourful ideas, striking found sounds, restrained swathes of noise, queasy loops, all this enveloped in a cloak of rustic warmth. There's a couple of more beat-laden pieces too, one which quietly recalls the vibe of early Four Tet. Yes, this is a perfect Autumn album. As Front & Follow are such amazing people, they've even included a bonus CD of early rare material to accompany initial orders. I've not listened to 'Salvaged' enough yet but it appears to be a cracking companion piece leading me to declare 'Loor' to be "bargain of the week"!
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