Slowly Rolling Camera – Slowly Rolling Camera
Edition Records EDN1048. CD/ LP review by Brian Blain)
Dave Stapleton is a brilliant pianist and composer, and his herculean efforts in making his Edition records, a UK ECM, a real force in the European scene represent a considerable achievement. There’s a lot of the neo-classical fusion in much of his music and the label frequently reflects his musical philosophy – I understand that he has now set up a parallel classical label to satisfy his passion further.
So, a new release from Edition, Slowly Rolling Camera comes as something of a surprise with its carpets of synthed sounds – soundscapes is the current phrase, I believe – frequent bouts of almost military rock/folk feels from the excellent drummer and programmer, Eliot Bennett and deep deep toned intros on the opening tracks from the wonderful bassist Jasper Hoiby.
Whether Slowly Rolling Camera is a band name or just the name of this album, mainly an exercise in moods and atmospheres – cinematic is another buzz word that will be bandied about – I am not sure. For guests abound such as Mark Lockheart, always a man with a nose for the musically adventurous and guitarist Chris Montague as well as the lost trumpet genius of Colwyn Bay, Neil Yates. Real strings , on a section redolent of quintessential English music by Elgar and Delius are superb on the long opening section of Bridge.
The one disappointment, paradoxically, is the soul inflected vocals of Dionne Bennett, which is strange because for those who saw her at the album launch at Pizza Express a few weeks ago her singing and captivating stage presence were absolutely mesmeric; star quality. To me she is ill served by the mix and where she should be strongly projected up front her sound seems strangely diffident.
That said, there are sections of serious musical pleasure throughout the album which have made me return to it again and again.
Slowly Rolling Camera is also available as a vinyl album (with download code) through Edition Records’ collaboration with Gearbox Records. Tour Dates Here