King Creosote (II)
The exquisite opening track ‘You Just Want’ explores this conflict by combining digital and analogue approaches to recording, with the song ultimately finding a sonic harmony somewhere between the two. The first part was recorded analogue after just one or two takes, reminiscent of Creosote’s early days in a stripped-back, busker-style bluegrass band where performances were rarely planned. Ultimately looking for something longer, however, KC opts to loop the middle of the track using digital methods. Described as a seven-minute piece of hymnal drone-pop, it eventually marries the old and the new flawlessly, but the song’s dark, hymn-like tones alludes to the complexities of doing so.
‘Betelgeuse’, probably the album’s standout track, is made in a similar vein: recorded part live in the studio, part via mobile phone, digital and analogue methods drive the song musically in tandem. “My ship has set course for the space in between”, he sings, again seemingly yearning for a medium that strides two worlds: on this stargazing track in particular, the reflective tone reveals a more philosophical side to King Creosote as he approaches his half-century. “The whole theme of the album is harking back to better days. I’m thinking have I done the right thing, have I made the right choices? I’m going to hit 50 and it’s a milestone and all these questions are in there.”
It’s a classic KC album. His Scottish brogue, the bagpipes, accordion and harp all reappear for his now expected impish magic. From seven-minute busking-style bluegrass openers to his daughter’s debut vocal, the experimentation won’t be for everyone and does lack the coherence found in the From Scotland project, but after dozens of albums, King Creosote is still finding ways to push himself and is totally justified purely for the creativity of the finished work.