Wilderness Hymnal - ‘Anthropocene’
Release Date: 30th November 2018
Label: Distributed by AWAL/Kobalt
Praise for Anthropocene:
"Transcendent... If you want to create a sound that’s truly your own,
this is how you do it." - Astral Noize
"A truly spellbinding experience" - Birthday Cake For Breakfast
"This is some record, epic in scale and ambition, and relentless in its pursuit of what it sees as the truth." - Louder Than War
"Eerie, cinematic" - UNCUT
[FFO: Anna Von Hausswolff, Ulver, Circle, Chelsea Wolfe, Nordic Giants]
"An organism at war with itself is doomed” – Carl Sagan
This concept sits at the heart of Wilderness Hymnal’s debut album ‘Anthropocene’, nine tracks spanning inventive post-rock, stormy piano passages and unnerving psychedelia that explore ecological and emotional harm, and the parallels between them.
Roaring guitar drones play off against skittering electronics, while grand piano and pummelling drums enter lockstep and soaring vocal harmonies cut through the murk. Helmed by British-Venezuelan singer and pianist Javier Wallis, ‘Anthropocene’ finds the band disregarding the limits of genre in favour of striking dynamics and dreamlike, exploratory structures.
Reflecting the acceleration of a confused and crumbling world, Wallis describes writing the album as a refuge and means to express the “impotent rage, fear and powerlessness” he feels around the growing threat of climate disaster, political upheaval and relentless consumerism. Hints at a dark personal history also creep into the frame, while the title comes from the proposed term for the current geological epoch, marked by the overwhelming alteration of nature, land and climate by human activity.
“It’s about inheriting a poisoned chalice - through a degraded world (man-made climate-change and ecological disaster), and the psychological scars that can run in families. Ecological catastrophe serves as the macro, psychological catastrophe as the micro - As above, so below.”
Recorded in Salford and Bristol by Wallis and producer Joe Garcia in the winter of 2016/17, songs move through landscapes of colour - evoking natural environments from the oceanic expanse of Abyssal, to the molten, volcanic tendencies of Aorta and Caldera. Joined by guitarist Mike Kelly and drummer John Simm (of math rock heroes Cleft), the trio expand the piano-and-electronics template of previous work into a vibrant new prospect.
3. Altar (Wilderness)
6. Bone Script
Javier Wallis - Piano, vocals, organ, synths, electric pianos, programming, misc. instrumentation.
Michael Kelly - Guitar, bass, mandolin.
John Simm - Drums.
Recorded, produced and mixed by Joe Garcia & JG Wallis at El Castillo, Manchester & Joe's Garage, Bristol, UK.
Mastered by James Plotkin at Plotkinworks, USA
Javier Wallis - Keys, Voice
Michael Kelly - Guitars
Nick Duke - Bass
Sion Roberts - Drums & percussion