SYLPH, the new iteration and solo project of the former singer with South London post-punks S.C.U.M., Thomas Cohen, is rounding off his year with a final, four-track EP, Ancient Hole, to which he invited the musical aesthetics of big, cast-iron techno names such as Regis, Terence Fixmer and Nicolas Bougaïeff and composer and singer Anni Hogan.
And as well as being available across the board digitally, Ancient Hole is also out as a squeakingly limited vinyl pressing in collaboration with The Vinyl Factory. More on that below.
The manifesto for the Sylph project? To be both psychedelic and collaborative in nature; to be informed by notions of space and congregation, and built loosely around the concept of ‘mass’; to have thrill and zing and a clubby edge.
As a welcome inside the EP we have a short film, directed by Victor Gutierrez, who brings us into Sylph’s romantically monochrome world in a brace of tracks from the EP: the wheezing, neo-industrial darkwave of “Scripture of Love”, with that hallmark Regis hard techno edge; and the title track, a lonelier, grand vocal nocturne. The film rounds off with the vamping witching-hour essay of “Tears Fall From The Sun”, featuring Californian multimedia artist Rrose, from previous outing, Silver As It Was Before.
The three-song film brings together some of the tactile elements that inspired the project, ranging from architecture to textiles.
“All holes are ancient; this is four songs from those spaces above and below. Chains, Scriptures and Ancient Holes That Touch Me Now I’m in Heaven,” says Thomas, poetically.
“I wanted to fuse the singer-songwriter format of having a verse or a chorus with a harder electronic repetition.”
Sylph’s Ancient Hole EP is out now from Mute digitally and on extremely limited (350 only) 12″; you can order your copy now, here.