Part two of The Caretaker’s long six-part farewell, in which James Leyland Kirby has given his project dementia in order to explore the melancholy horror of the condition. Everywhere At The End Of Time - Stage 2 feels appropriately disorientating to listen to: the ancient samples sound beautiful, but you know what they are beckoning towards. LP on History Favours The Winners.
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- HAFTW026 / Black vinyl repress LP on History Always Favours The Winners. Mastered and cut by Lupo, with artwork by Ivan Seal
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Leyland Kirby’s second album to be titled ‘Everything At the End of Time’ continues his project’s life-long investigation into dementia and memory. Having sorta clumsily diagnosed his project with an illness -- by declaring, confusingly, that “the Caretaker has dementia” -- this edition is number two in a six album series of albums that will effectively live the final days in the project’s life before it dies. It’s a fairly hamfisted and heavy-handed theme, especially from a man who’s tended to handle this subject matter with grace and detail, but the sound remains familiar to its muse of a masterpiece, ‘An Empty Bliss Beyond this World’.
If you’ve listened to Kirby’s Caretaker project before, you’ll know what to expect: affected ballroom swing comes under a cracked lens of ambience, the antiquated melodies looped and reconstructed until they become dislodged from their original context. His trademark as become sublimating these tunes so that their cadences are never reached and their melodies endlessly repeat, becoming stuck to themselves, though this record seems to offer a dronier side to Kirby’s edits, the pieces often feeling long and languishing.
With the horns and strings becoming more burdened with the feeling if sustain, Kirby’s project and its character become more ponderous, seemingly following the phasing of dementia he’s given it. In spite of its overt thematic phrasing, his music remains as unsettling in its cracked lullaby state as ever
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