'Our Worn Shadow' was the second album by Bristol native Chris Cole who has worked with Movietone, Matt Elliott, Soeza and Bracken amongst others. Following on from his self titled debut on Moteer, 'Our Worn Shadow' album is one of the true high water marks of neo-classical composition and can be compared favourably with work by Yann Tiersen and Four Tet.
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- PUBLICHOUSE008/ SHARBON001
- PUBLICHOUSE008/ SHARBON001 / Limited vinyl pressing edition of 250 in matt reverse board sleeve. MP3 download included.
- Includes download code
6 reviews. Add your own review.
Good things do come to those who wait.
At one point, implausibly, this album didn't even have a release. Then, in 2006, Spanish label Acuarela took a punt on it. And yet still it disappeared into an obscurity it really didn’t deserve. Finally, in 2015, after a hiatus lasting almost ten years, Manyfingers (aka Bristolian Chris Cole) released the marvellous The Spectacular Nowhere...and so we thought it was high time this earlier work was available once again. On vinyl, naturally.
‘Our Worn Shadow’ is truly the type of record that needs to be heard by a much wider audience. It showcases the perfect combination of neo-classical composition with organic beat making. Chris Cole was in the marvellous Bristol band Movietone, as well as being a long-term collaborator with Matt Elliott, but if he’s going to be remembered for anything it should be this heavenly slice of joy.
Brian’s review of the Acuarela release from 2006 (below) says pretty much what I’d say about the record. If you had to file together, for future generations, just two records that blend organic and electronic composition I’d recommend you choose this alongside Phelan Shepherd’s brilliant ‘Harp’s Old Master’. Both records take their cues initially from folk (‘Our Worn Shadow’ uses cello, accordion, vibraphone, cello, piano and drums as its main sound banks), and both owe something to Four Tet’s ‘Rounds’ in terms of using these instruments as a way of digitising old sounds. However, whereas ‘Rounds’ relies on laptop technology, ‘Our Worn Shadow’ is painstakingly played with real instruments - a veritable orchestra of sounds with influences as far reaching as Arvo Part, Moondog and Steve Reich.
Unlike ‘Rounds’ it isn’t fixed to a particular era. It sounds as fresh today as it did over a decade ago. It has a lovely autumnal majesty to it, but it’s also truly accessible and addictive. And whilst it has obvious highlights ('For Measures Shores' is just perfect) it works even more beautifully as a whole piece.
We can’t make you like it, but you know what? We are going to damn well try.
Oh God. Remember the Manyfingers album we had in our occasional listening column eons ago? It was called 'Our Worn Shadow' and was one of the most sumptuous bouts of playful neo-classical wonderment we'd all heard ever.
Now Acuarela, the Spanish people, have lovingly taken the gauntlet and thrown it into the pit for inspection. Eight wonderfully constructed tracks of passionately layered instrumentation - accordion, Spanish guitar, cello, piano, drums and more. I'm really struggling to describe the magnificence of this album. If you dig Four Tet's more spellbinding and hypnotic moments, Yann Tiersen and Sylvain Chauveau's chamber music, and possibly the likes of Steve Reich (or even maybe spots of Terry Riley!) then this gem of an album should be in your collection.
It's like a one man orchestra smashing in yer eardrums. A true maverick.
9/10 Kathryn Customer review, 29th April 2010This has been one of my favourite albums over the past few years - a near perfect (almost) all instrumental album of fluid drumming underpinning really nice neo-classical compositions. Its hard to believe that it was made by one man (Chris Cole) as there are so many instruments at play. If you like the gallic soundtracks of Yann Tiersen then you will find much to enjoy here, favourite tracks are the title track which builds beautifully with horns and strings and eventually some spoken word female vocals. I also like '3 Forms' with its Phillip Glass style piano triplets and gorgeously mournful cello lines. This is an album which works as a whole piece though, you can sit down with it at any time of day or night and let the beautiful sweeping orchestral sounds engulf you. Gorgeous.
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- Our Worn Shadow by Manyfingers
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