Before and Afterlife

Creating other worlds

When Jan Bang heard that Norwegian trumpeter Nils Petter Molvær had been invited to rework a track for David Sylvian’s instrumental compilation, Camphor, he didn’t hold back in seeking a role in the commission. ‘I said to Nils, “If you are doing a remix of David Sylvian, I need to be on it.” Just like that,’ remembered Bang, laughing, in an interview with John Kelman for the All About Jazz website. ‘Nils and I had been working closely for so many years, and it sort of felt natural.’ (2010)

So why the drive to work with Sylvian? ‘While I was growing up, I was listening more to disco, R&B; that was what I was interested in. And then a change happened, by accident really. I was working in a record store, one that imported 12″ vinyl and mostly from London, so we had the fresh material from dance music from both the UK and the States. And there was this 12″ by David Sylvian, called ‘Red Guitar‘ from Brilliant Trees, and that changed the way I listened to music. I was listening to more American music at the time and this was totally the opposite – a more European aesthetic, more inwards than outwards-looking. With that, I became more curious and found more music that led me to Jon Hassell (who was involved with Brilliant Trees), and Scott Walker, the American singer that was based in Europe.’

Continue reading “Before and Afterlife”

Playground Martyrs

‘Childhood trauma’

Steve Jansen was a part of samadhisound from the start. He helped to develop the new label’s studio after David Sylvian relocated from California to the mountains of New Hampshire. Together the brothers explored the possibilities of the latest recording technology, and in 2002 they began to fashion compositions that would ultimately be part of the Nine Horses release. Steve even relocated for a year with his family to the remote former ashram site that was now home to Sylvian, his wife Ingrid Chavez and their children. As Sylvian took a six-week break to record Blemish, Jansen turned his attentions to evolving material for a debut release under his own name.

Continue reading “Playground Martyrs”