Sunday 17 April 2022

Gravenhurst - Rusted Masks


Bio by Heather Phares:
Making music equally inspired by the British folk of Fairport Convention and Bert Jansch and the volatile, textural rock of My Bloody Valentine, Gravenhurst was the brainchild of singer/multi-instrumentalist Nick Talbot (14 May 1977 – 2 December 2014).  Gravenhurst's first album, 2002's "Internal Travels", concentrated on simple but meticulous acoustic guitar work coupled with lyrics inspired by murder ballads. The following year, Talbot released the more elaborate, fuller-sounding "Flashlight Seasons", which attracted the attention of Warp Records, who signed Gravenhurst and re-released the album early in 2004. Later that year, the mini-album "Black Holes in the Sand" became Gravenhurst's first original release for the label.

Released in 2005, the single "The Velvet Cell" and full-length "Fires in Distant Buildings" were Talbot's most fully fleshed-out works yet, incorporating not only folk and electronica but heavy fuzzed-out electric guitars and chugging Krautrock-influenced rhythms as well. The band's excellent 2007 album, "The Western Lands", leaned more toward space rock and shoegaze. With the departure of most of Talbot's touring band for other countries and projects, he returned to a one-man version of Gravenhurst for tours and performances at festivals in the late 2000s and early 2010s. This approach rubbed off on his fourth album, "The Ghost in Daylight", which featured some of his most intimate songwriting and seamless blends of folk, shoegaze, and electronics. Late in 2014, Warp released "Offerings: Lost Songs 2000-2004", a collection of previously unreleased early recordings. That December, Warp announced that Talbot had died at the age of 37.

There isn't really much more I can add to the above excellent bio by Heather Phares. This collection features tracks from all the albums mentioned above, plus the odd compilation track and a few b-sides/EP tracks. Again this is another artist I didn't think of doing a compilation of, until I dug out my copy of "Fires in Distant Buildings" a couple of weeks back, prompting me to revisit his whole back catalogue. A sad loss to music, to this day the cause of his untimely death has never been disclosed. As usual origin of each track & year of release is tagged in the music files and in the download file. I hope you enjoy, cheers!

  1. Black Holes in the Sand (7:22)
  2. Entertainment (3:43)
  3. In Your Room (3:38)
  4. East of the City (2:33)
  5. Hollow Men (3:55)
  6. Song From Under the Arches (10:21)
  7. Longest River (2:57)
  8. Circadian (4:07)
  9. I Found the F (3:25)
10. For Erin (2:32)
11. Nightwatchman's Blues (4:02)
12. A Call to Arms (3:15)
13. The Velvet Cell (4:59)
14. Tunnels (4:42)
15. Islands (8:03)
16. The Western Lands (4:11)
17. Winter Moon (4:29)
18. Who Put Bella in the Wych Elm? (3:27)
19. Underfoot (4:19)
20. See My Friends (9:04)

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