Last year Martha Skye Murphy released a triptych Concrete; An EP of three icy chunks of baroque pop music with a producer FKA Twigs. Gravelly, astral and etheric, Concrete was as wide as fleeting. It took a little over twelve minutes, Concrete gave faith Murphy the skill of the writer and vocalist. During this time, she somehow managed to create her own microcosm, a sad world that lingered somewhere between brutalist architecture and romantic hysteria. Kate Bush. If concrete was an exercise in finding silence between times, then Distance on the ground, her new collaboration with an experimental composer Maxwell Sterling, is an exercise to move forward while remaining still.
A conceptual work consisting of two impromptu long compositions and accompanying video clips for each, Distance on the ground explores the idea of traveling and staying current. Murphy and sterling focus on how as you travel the world around you blurs and evolves with each passing moment as long as your body remains still. Music follows through this investment, layering phrases Murphy hydraid vocalization against the backdrop of an ever-changing landscape of dark bass and synthesizer passages. Things never stay constant. Pad Sterling authorship, it all revolves and collides with each other, amorphous but clear as flourishing, merging watercolors. All of this paints a scene of a view out the window of a car as the world approaches from outside, sometimes a meditative, sometimes treacherous experience, where the impending danger of total destruction is almost as definite as the destination. On 86 km the horizon opens with sliding strings under the blankets of the drones, suddenly coming into focus with Murphy a voice that calls like a mermaid frolicking in the surf. This voice quality is maintained for eight minutes of track at one time Sterling manipulation and layering with Murphy the voice even resembled the chatter of dolphins. Phrases slow down and change places, growing into one another and eventually juxtaposing so that they turn into increasingly sinister formulas like 86 km goes its own way. 93.3 km even more uneven, shuddering, abyss and anticipation of Murphy a voice receding into the shadows like a mechanical siren.
Download Distance on the ground here
sterling constantly stood out as one of the most ambitious and expressive voices in classical music and orchestras. Last year Turn phrases was exciting, lasted long after the last notes of the harpsichord Summing up plunged into nothing. З Murphy, he once again brings this visionary perspective to the forefront, creating for her an amazing, fantastic world that in sound suggests a binary gap between our world and the alternate dimension. This music combines with the mise-en-scene of the world around you, recovering from where you feel it from, and then distorting this place altogether. The magic happens when all of a sudden you find yourself pulled out of the real world Distance on the ground dark attraction.
Combined with the accompanying visuals of the EP, Murphy and sterling supervised the whole theater of feelings. It is interesting to consider the work created about travel in relation to the immobile body at a time when travel has become less frequent or necessary for us. They sit in their house and listen Murphy Songs of sirens that penetrate the views of moving landscapes, you go on a full journey without going anywhere. And with the fact that our homes have become more isolated than ever, it is a magical escapism that speaks to the present moment. Try the EP and its visual effects here.
Listen 86 km from Distance on the ground below.
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Martha Skye Murphy and Maxwell Sterling – Distance on the ground