Modern Nature ‘Island of Noise’ Box Set
Pre-order. Due 3rd December.
Since the demise of his previous band, Ultimate Painting, Jack Cooper - under his Modern Nature guise - has never stopped looking ahead, exploring and reaching for something further. Since 2019, he’s released an EP, last year’s mini album ‘Annual’, one full length LP, one 7” and three live cassettes - in the process mapping out astonishing new terrain. ‘Island of Noise’ presents an obvious new peak in his discography.
Over the last 12 months, Cooper has constructed a beautiful, free-flowing box set’s worth of material featuring a new album, a separate and equally engaging instrumental interpretation of the album and an accompanying book featuring the work of wide-ranging, non-musical artists (including Booker-nominated poet Robin Robertson, mycologist Merlin Sheldrake, illustrator Sophy Hollington, and writer Richard King) that reinterpret, deconstruct or take inspiration from the 10 tracks on the record.
‘Island of Noise’ represents an absolute career highlight, combining Cooper’s celebrated songwriting and compositional skills with a free flowing expansiveness coloured by British free music luminaries such as saxophonist Evan Parker, pianist Alexander Hawkins, bassist John Edwards and violinist Alison Cotton, as well as long term collaborators Jeff Tobias and Jim Wallis.
The album was completed during a relaxation of the pandemic restrictions and for Cooper and his fellow musicians, its recording came to represent a sanctuary in itself. The feeling of freedom with which they made the record allowed for hours of improvisation and experimentation, resulting in a companion record called ‘Island of Silence’; a more impressionistic instrumental picture of the island and its music.
Elaborating one step further, Cooper approached ten artists he felt an affinity towards (including Booker-nominated poet Robin Robertson, mycologist Merlin Sheldrake, illustrator Sophy Hollington, polymath Eugene Chadbourne and The Lark Ascending author Richard King) and asked them to reinterpret, deconstruct or take inspiration from one of the ten pieces of music for an accompanying book.
‘Island of Noise’ and ‘Island of Silence’ were both recorded on 2” tape with long-term collaborator and co-producer Ed Deegan and then cut directly to vinyl. Similar attention has been paid to the production of the book and box set, with all of the material, including the vinyl, sourced from recycled and sustainable materials.
Box set features ‘Island of Noise’ and ‘Island of Silence’, pressed on 180g recycled vinyl plus a 36-page perfect bound book with 10 contributions from artists and writers in conjunction with, and inspired by, a song on the album. Housed in a slipcase with 100% recycled and FSC approved wrap, with digital download.
Catalogue number: BELLA1239V
Label: Bella Union