YOU ALMOST certainly know J. Willgoose as one of the bespectacled whizzkids behind the ever brilliant Public Service Broadcasting.
But now he’s decided to invest in a little extra-curricular activity away from his six-string anchorman role in the nation’s favourite broadcaster, and has announced a solo album for Play It Again Sam in the guise of Late Night Final, to be called A Wonderful Hope.
He’s shared the atmospheres of “Thank You” from the album, with accompanying swirling, impressionistic visuals to take you deeper; we’ve embedded it down below, where the words run out.
Using the happy accident that so often leads one down a new creative path, the track hooks on a sample from a company response accidentally triggered when using a new loop pedal: the mantric ‘thank you’ that spirals through the electronic bliss-space of the track.
Written during lockdown, the Late Night Final project had its genesis in a yearning to connect with other humans; a need to do something creative and regain some sense of control.
“We were working on the next Public Service Broadcasting album when the restrictions hit,” says Willgoose. “All of our equipment was stuck in a different country and we were unable to meet up.
“I’ve always wanted to explore a more meditative sound, inspired by Brian Eno, Vangelis, Tangerine Dream and KLF’s seminal Chill Out. This felt like the perfect opportunity.”
And even though A Wonderful Hope is aiming very much for the cosmic, with four tracks clocking in at 45 minutes, the little samples like the ‘thank you’ are joined by other evocative, quotidian moments such as the distorted sound of J.Willgoose’s baby’s rattle, backwards masked, on “A Wonderful Hope”; and samples from the local park on “Slow Release”.
Willgoose also explores theories of random music generation as well as the human capacity for hope, he says: “We will find our way back to a world in which live music will happen again; but I’m less optimistic in person than I am on record.
“Music allows me to express hopes I find difficult to acknowledge in everyday life. I made this whole album picturing a dance tent at 4am or a room late at night, full of people, movement and warmth and all the joy that that can bring. It feels like I was sending signals out into space.”
Late Night Final’s A Wonderful Hope will be released by Play It Again Sam on mp3, CD, trad black vinyl and limited yellow vinyl on December 11th; pre-order your copy here.