Martyn Bates - Fireworks & Jewels / The Colour Of Amber
Eyeless In Gaza in my opinion have been vastly underappreciated by the music press and the public over the years. Their first album "Photographs As Memories" is firmly embedded as a landmark record in my personal musical landscape. It stands amongst only a handful of records that I consider to be almost flawless. It is completely engaging from the artwork and packaging, to the craftsmanship of the songs, the sequencing of tracks, the sound pallette and every sonic nuance from beginning to end.
Earlier this year, when I was invited to head up the curation and project manage "Miniatures 2020", Eyeless In Gaza were among the first invitations to contribute a track and I am extremely pleased that they have agreed to take part.
Martyn, recently sent me this CD which is one of about 20 solo albums that he has delivered over the years. I have to say that listening to it only furthers my belief that there is a whole body of work here that is underappreciated and unfathomingly overlooked.
The album was recorded in Evia, one of the larger Greek islands and certainly the location appears to have contributed to the ethereal, poetic and brooding atmosphere. Recorded in the midst of Greek economic, social and political uncertainty during 2015. We now have global economic, social and political uncertainty... the album very much speaks to the times.
Musically it is underpinned by acoustic guitar & piano with some really excellent banj0 and additional vocals courtesy of Elizabeth S., accented with electronics and other rather intriguing instrumentation by Alan Trench.
There were a few moments whilst listening I was reminded very much of Bert Jansch, the banjo made me think of Shirley Collins but there's plenty of other interesting musical subtleties going on beneath the surface to captivate the listener.
Fireworks & Jewels / The Colour Of Amber is a haunting, ethereal and compelling listening experience. Lyrically reflective and beautifully expressed.
For more info visit: https://www.eyelessingaza.com/