ARC083: Gyratory System - New Harmony

New Harmony

Artist: Gyratory System

Release Date: 18th April 2011

Release Type: Album

Formats: CD, Digital

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Gyratory System is the sound of electronica played by clockwork and steam-powered sequencers.

Over the last year producer/trumpeter Andrew Blick has been holed-up perfecting a new batch of material using the band’s customized recording technique, ‘The Process’ adding to the melodic feel of earlier releases an industrial, Einsturzende Neubauten/Cabaret Voltaire edge, plus an affinity with contemporary acts like Holy Fuck, Black Dice and Fuck Buttons.

The first Gyratory Systems album, ‘The Sound-Board Breathes’, received widespread acclaim: strong radio support at 1FM, 6music and XFM; across the board great album reviews including one of The Quietus’ top 10 albums of 2009; plus the band has won fans including Soulwax/2 many DJs, who invited them to join the bill at their Brixton Academy shows in 2009.

Using electronica as a base-camp, ‘New Harmony’ makes instrumental expeditions into territory including free-jazz, minimalist composition and Afro-beat.

As on the previous album, the band sonically depicts London landmarks both well-known and obscure, with trip-hop-gone-John Coltrane opener ‘Lost on the King’s Road’; the hypnotic synth-and brass fanfare clatter of ‘Seven Dials’; and the Harmonia/Kraftwerk-flavoured ‘Sicilian Avenue’. There is a more ambient interlude in ‘I must Create a System’, a title drawn from the writing of William Blake. Album title track and single ‘New Harmony’ is named after a 19th Century socialist commune established in the US; and the political theme continues on album closer ‘Industrial Action’.

When not creating Gyratory System’s blend of heavily treated wind instruments, synths and processed percussion, Dr. Blick is a constitutional historian and author who once worked at No. 10 Downing Street. His diverse musical background includes work with artists such as Damo Suzuki of Can, David Gedge of the Wedding Present and drum n’ bass DJ Grooverider. The late John Peel once joked on-air that Blick had done so many sessions for so many different bands on his show that he should be banned from the Maida Vale studios!

The album release on Saturday 16 April will tie in with Record Store Day and special events being organised by Angular/Bang On.

"New Harmony' sounds like nothing else you'll hear this year" - Loud and Quiet

"...a little of his metronomic musical order goes a long way" - The Wire

"Captain Beefheart dabbling with Ableton or a Philharmonic orchestra conducted by Dr. Zeus." - Clash

1. Lost on the King's Road
2. New Harmony
3. Un-Sound
4. Seven Dials
5. Pamplona
6. I Must Create a System
7. Hotel Curious
8. Sicilian Avenue
9. Gargoyle
10. Industrial Action