“Underpass” is my first major release. I wanted to create a sound world that encompasses everything I find enjoyable and/or illuminating about music in addition to life itself.
Being quite an emotional musician with perfect pitch, I like to express myself aurally, which can include improvised and/or non-improvised musical ideas in addition to communicating my thoughts through other sound sources such as nature sounds. Tracks including, “That Purple Dress” and “Silhouette” attempt to express great romanticism and go about establishing a personal connection musically regardless if the recipient is aware or not of its existence.
“A Journey Through Thought” and “No More Sorrow” were composed to speak my mind musically of my personal hatred towards suffering both globally and on a personal level. There have been times when I’ve felt quite depressed and it came to a point that I could only let it out by improvising musically using certain timbres. It so happens that these improvised segments were recorded and eventually transformed into structured compositions.
“The Time We Spent” reflects upon a special friendship I’ve been blessed to have since early childhood. This special friend also happens to be the saxophonist on this album. The briefly heard soundscape that occurs during the piano solo symbolizes a personal reminder of how patient he is when he’s teaching me something musically, especially when I get it wrong, which happens more than one would think.
“Fanta Fruit Twist” and “Speed Limits” were composed as an attempt to communicate my personal enjoyments, which are linked to specific memories. I first tried Fanta Fruit Twist when I was in sixth form and I had an afternoon free of lessons after a lunchtime choir rehearsal. My best friend mentioned previously and I decided to get our lunch after the rehearsal. After we finished selecting our loaf of bread and chocolate cake, David persuaded me to try some Fanta Fruit Twist saying that I would like it. We headed out of the shop and ended up walking into the park. I then took a gamble and gave the drink a try. Oh what a sweet memory. It was a very warm day, the sky was a deep blue and there was a gentle breeze in the air. The sense of swing signifies the two of us walking round the park discussing Jazz and why we thought some musicians were/are more important than others whilst enjoying chocolate cake mixed with Fanta Fruit Twist. “Speed Limits” in contrasts portrays a sense of momentum rather than relaxation. I wanted to communicate my enjoying of acceleration and going round steep corners, be it on a brilliant rollercoaster or in a certain university housemate’s car. I recorded the sounds of the London Underground and Guildford station to help portray my memories of physical and mental enjoyment.
I find that I can fall asleep and wake up easier with appropriate music. “Lazy River” is a track that one could use for such purposes. It came out of a piano improvisation that I recorded where It had been a long day and I felt relaxed after a very satisfying dinner, which included a mouthwatering fantastic pudding. I found myself interpreting my own sense of contentment and peacefulness through this composition and the accompanying soundscape helps portray these inner feelings.
“Seeing Beyond” was written to challenge listeners on some foundational yet important and somewhat philosophical aspects of life. These aspects include questions such as, what’s the meaning of life? Where did we come from? What else is out there waiting to be discovered? Is there anything beyond what we can see with our own physical eyes and interpret with our minds? Do we have a sense of spirit inside us? Is there someone or something out there sustaining the earth? Is there a God? The tune is very simple, but there are underlining elements that portray a great sense of mystery and beauty. This is one of the tracks on the album that clearly demonstrates the fusing of jazz and ambient music and I for one find it quite liberating.
“Sunshine Blues” acts more as a technical exercise if anything. I was greatly influenced by Wayne Shorter and his track “Footprints.” I noted it was a 12 bar blues transformed and reinterpreted. I therefore decided to do my own reinterpretation and transformation of the famous 12 bar blues structure. While “Footprints” lends itself more on the minor side, “Sunshine Blues” sounds more major and happy than usual. This track has a strong establishing baseline and overall gives a great sense of a band having a good time by having a good jam.