BRITISH leftfield saxophonist and composer Samuel Sharp, who has previously partially hidden his light under the recording name Lossy – and whose lovely, dubby, impressionistic single release “Fireworks From The Tower” we had the pleasure of covering here – has announced a new album, Patterns Various, which he’ll be gracing our senses with come mid-February; and alongside which announcement he’s just dropped the first single to be lifted from that work, “Catching Leaves”, which you can listen to herein.
On ‘Catching Leaves”, we find Samuel in his role as father in Coram’s Fields, right in the heart of London – a playground complex that has swings, a big park, a cafe, indoor play areas and even farm animals; it’s right by the Charles Dickens Museum.
He and the family headed there one day in autumn to find the enormous trees were shedding their leaves as they blew in the wind.
This composition is about him and his kids running around trying to catch them, falling over, laughing and celebrating each time they caught one. You can hear the flurries of leaves and the early autumn wind in the harmonies of the opening theme, and the subsequent darting about as his sax flurries and crests through the melody; the layering conversation of the instrument with itself is stirring and beautiful.
“This was surprisingly tricky, actually!,” Samuel says.
“The piece is pretty much completely improvised as I imagine this scene while playing through a combination of harmoniser and delay effects.”
Sharp feeds the electronics and then in turn responds to their output on the fly, resulting in a lively, lovely cascade.
The album, which will also feature the preceding single – a fireworks display across the capital, seen from on high – promises a very personal and luscious, diaristic, sonic journey; with tracks named for those poetic moments of the everyday such as “Starling Swarm” and “Pushing Swings”, it it’s gonna be intriguing to see how he renders such snapshots in experimental melody. We suspect it’s going to be a fascinating and deep addition to a certain strain of very human, pastoralist responses to the world.
Each piece, we’re told, has some degree of improvisation within: some are completely composed on the fly, while others are more composed.
Keep ’em peeled for our review of the album in the new year.
Samuel Sharp’s Patterns Various will be released digitally by Boot Cycle Audio on February 19th next year; you can pre-order your copy from Samuel’s Bandcamp page, here.