Choral. Calming. Celestial.
C Duncan manages to merge all these ‘c’ related adjectives and more into what is a beautifully intricate debut album. Having done the recording, production and artwork himself – it’s an ambitious piece of work by the promising Glaswegian multi-instrumentalist.
Dreamy and blissful, Architect has an eternal feel it. It feels old-worldy yet very much of today – a Gaelic monk driving along the coast, if you will. Being the son of two classical musicians and having trained at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, you can appreciate the thoughtfulness of its complexity; yet it’s all very accessible with its understated pop tone.
We start off big with ‘Say’, a song driven by its weightless percussion and drawn out vocals. It’s this light, airy atmosphere that glides us gently through the rest of the album. The pace never rests; rather it sashays up and down the scale of heavenly mellowness. The subtle energy of one song sits comfortable next to the gentle caress of another.
‘He Believes in Miracles’ glistens with a tint of psychedelia. Duncan sings “Someone came and stole my heart / I don’t want it back” and “I hear the bells chiming over the land to see you / I feel my heart beating rum-bump-bum-bum when I’m near you” in a way that is poignant and uplifting. You can’t help but smile when such lyrics sit perfectly next to chimes and bells.
‘Garden’ has a stirring, gentle and positive energy to it, and seems like the perfect song to start a good day with. ‘Here To There’ follows, and has an almost dark air to it as the brooding, continuous Joy Division-esque beat goes on.
Duncan has weaved an intricate musical tapestry that unravels at the end. Closing track ‘I’ll Be Gone By Winter’ is the perfect antidote to the sounds that precede it. Like drinking water after a complex wine, you appreciate all that was before. It Duncan even sings a refrain of “goodbye” as the final few seconds of the album close. It’s sheer simplicity done well.
The name says it all: Architect. It’s clear that thought and planning has gone into the album with every note in its right place.
– Jennifer Ho
Support Band: FatCat Records