Bested Bones

japan's nightmare

Crotchety Man is operating in low power mode today. He picked up a nasty infection earlier in the week and his biochemical batteries are now completely drained. So, while this husk of a man soothes his shattered spirit and rests his weary bones, he invites you to watch this bleak but fascinating video.

Bested Bones is the opening track from Book of Romance and Dust, the debut album by Exit North. The band was formed in 2014 when Steve Jansen (multi-instrumentalist co-founder of Japan) and Thomas Feiner (vocalist and composer) began to collaborate. They soon added Ulf Jansson (piano, keyboards) and later brought in Charles Storm (guitars, bass, production) to complete the lineup.

Exit North

The music on the album is of indeterminate genre. Discogs offers ‘electronic’, ‘rock’ and ‘classical’ tags, which barely hint at the distinctive style of this band; all the other online sources I have found make no comment at all. The best description I came across is from an album review on the Picadilly Records website:

Exit North is … about generating an aural gravity

Imagine looking down into a dark chasm from a breezy cliff top. The ruptured Earth gapes back with a toothless grin and the sound of the Underworld seeps up through the riven rocks. Hades is calling you. Gravity tugs at your coat while the wind whispers a warning: if you heed the call you will never come back. It is the pull of the Earth and the gravity of the grave that Exit North have conjured up.

piano, cloud

But fear not. Crotchety Man has been into the abyss and returned to tell the tale. He will be your guide. And there are treasures in those caverns you won’t want to miss. Take, for example, the resonant, spectral tones of Thomas Feiner’s vocals or the fathomless depth of Lars Danielsson’s double bass. Then there’s the processed trumpet, the tubular bells, soft velvet strings and a trio of backing vocalists (including one Fyfe Dangerfield). It’s a spacious arrangement and a perfectly crafted production. Listen and enjoy.

And while you do that, I’ll put myself back on the caffeine and sugar re-charging regime.


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