From the combined backgrounds of film score composition and field recordings comes Asylum For Eve, Thomas William Hill’s rich and expressive new album, and the first written under his own name. It will be released through Village Green. While not a concept album in the strict sense of the term, the album’s title refers to a hypothetical imagining of Mitochondrial Eve, the theorised matrilineal ancestor of all living humans, reincarnated in today’s world of restricted movement. After tracking down an old Bechstein Model 9 upright piano for Asylum For Eve, Thomas set about modifying and preparing it with cardigans, screws and nails in order to provide the textures and timbres which characterise the album’s dense, affecting sound. Techniques employed for the album include the intricate layering of bowed guitars and ukuleles, and fingerpicked violins, banjo and charango. Tracks such as Pinhole Eclipse, Laniakea, Cirrostratus and Peak District all feature the soft, mournful dustings of piano that have come to define a sound spearheaded by artists such as Nils Frahm and Olafur Arnalds. With the addition of mallet instruments, toyboxes and climactic string arrangements, however, Thomas succeeds in producing a textured sound, rich in emotional depth, that is uniquely his own. Often, the music is powerful, evocative and cinematic, reaching high, cathartic climaxes while also providing moments of extreme tenderness, but this experimentation with layering also works beautifully when crafting lighter moods.
LP - With Download.