Track: Hannah Peel’s ‘Evocative’ is tomorrow’s world today

FOR HER latest journey into the world of sound, the album Fir Wave, out at the end of next month, Hannah Peel was given the keys to a sound source of classic production recordings made by a legend of electronic music whose lineage she’s carrying forward – Delia Derbyshire.

As she explains: The specialist library label KPM gave me permission to reinterpret the original music of the celebrated 1972 KPM 1000 series: Electrosonic, the music of Delia Derbyshire and the Radiophonic Workshop.”

That’s got to be exciting for any artist; and for those of us of a retrotronic stripe, Hannah meets Delia on quarter-inch tape? Well that’s got to be mouthwatering.

Her process of re-sampling and generating her own new digital instruments, allowing for fresh inspiration in pioneering, experimental electronics from the early 1970s, is at the core of the album.

We took a look at her first single from Fir Wave, “Emergence In Nature”, here; we noted that it was “a beautifully off-kilter electronica confection, seemingly intent on the dancefloor but also really curious about a lot of other wayward textures it can play with; synth voices, skittering chatter, bleepy sweeps heading for Jon Hopkins country, while also pulling almost toward the Moondog compositional sphere. Intriguing and intelligent and deeply fun.”

Today she’s shared the excellent and timeless “Evocative”, which seems pretty aptly titled. What does it evoke? For me, it splices the theme from a television show you watched in the alternative world of deep sleep, in which a childhood me is watching a science programme, all green-screen cursors, zero gravity, sideburns; Tomorrow’s World today, as hauntological as you like. But that satisfyingly clicky deep bass might have escaped from a Source Direct banger, and those swirling depths …

Hannah says: “I’m finding it harder to express all those huge feelings in words and lyrics like I used to.

“Instrumental music can conjure so much more and with this new track, I wanted to evoke those patterns in nature, celebrate the detail, the changes in light, play with primal shimmering energy, using obscure bells and the bubbling beats of electronic music.” 

With a stint curating BBC Radio 3’s Night Tracks, and the stunning electronica-meets-poetry pastoralism of the album Chalk Hill Blue with Will Burns, one of my favourite leftfield records of recent years, she abides at the forefront of making electronic music something really, really damn interesting indeed.

Hannah Peel’s Fir Wave will be released by On My Own Pleasure digitally and on vinyl on March 26th – order yours here; a limited edition neon pressing will be available from April 16th. The Dinked edition has now sold out.

For more on a fascinating artist, hive yourself over to

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