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Balafon Sketches

by Contours

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blayze hembree
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blayze hembree One of my favorite albums from 2020. Doesn't simply blend the organic and electronic, but instead rubs these seemingly opposing worlds up against one another to show us their distinctions and, perhaps more importantly, when their boundaries melt away. Favorite track: Okutama.
polinos
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polinos Wonderful eclectic fusion of jazzy electronics and rhythmic minimalist workouts for the african xylofon-like instrument, the balafon. Seamlessly organic and synthetic at the same time.
caapi
caapi thumbnail
caapi Wow, completely blown away by this, life-affirming music, really beautiful fusion of styles and instruments Favorite track: Keld ft Abel Selaocoe & Callum Connell.
zaidthanoon
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zaidthanoon A brilliant and worthwhile initiative behind the album, aswell as wonderfully transcendental, organic pieces that were a joy to listen to. Eastern Bells definitely my favourite. Favorite track: Eastern Bells ft Beka Reid & Seth Sutton.
Twistedsoul
Twistedsoul thumbnail
Twistedsoul Balafon Sketches is the perfect place to leave your head for a while. 100% of profits from this release will be donated to Kids of Colour and Colours Youth Network. Great music and it’s for a great cause! Favorite track: Keld ft Abel Selaocoe & Callum Connell.
Ruf Dug
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Ruf Dug A truly magical project - one of my favourite albums of 2020, a total work of art.
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  • Streaming + Download

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
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      £6 GBP  or more

     

  • Limited Edition, lino printed Cassette
    Cassette + Digital Album

    Each tape features a hand printed linocut by Kitty Hopking.

    Includes unlimited streaming of Balafon Sketches via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.

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  • Balafon Sketches Limited Edition 12" Vinyl
    Record/Vinyl + Digital Album

    Balafon Sketches began as a series of live jams in Cumbria. Percussionist and producer Contours & instrument builder, musician, painter and ceramicist Seth Sutton experimented with balafons and a gamelan alongside Sutton’s homemade string and percussive instrumentation. The tracks’ foundations were built running these elements of tuned percussion through delay and reverb pedals, experimenting with interlocking polyrhythms and the overtones and textures created by the raw recordings.

    Contours built upon these recordings utilising a range of live instrumentation such as synthesizers, drum machines and other organic percussion. He worked alongside several instrumentalists: cellist Abel Selaocoe and saxophonist/ flautist Callum Connell feature on ‘Keld’, violinist Simmy Singh on ‘45npr’, and violinist Beka Reid on ‘Eastern Bells’.

    Balafon Sketches sees the coming together of electronic and organic instrumentation. It crosses musical traditions that makes for a sonic journey, taking as much influence from African rhythmic practice as it does from minimalism, electronic music and the transcendental nature of ambient music and spiritual jazz.

    This release is the organic output of spontaneous experimentation with friends, and was entirely recorded in our homes in Manchester and Cumbria.

    Originally self-released as a limited cassette run in July 2020. Balafon Sketches now sees a limited edition vinyl re-issue courtesy of new Stockport imprint 'Net Of Gems'.

    Seth Sutton: Gamelan, percussion & homemade instrumentation
    Abel Selaocoe: Cello
    Callum Connell: Saxophone & flute
    Simmy Singh: Violin
    Beka Reid: Violin
    Tom Burford: Production, balafon, gamelan, percussion, drum machine, synthesizer, RE20 space echo & field recordings

    Mastered for vinyl by Dominic Clare @ Declared Sound
    Artwork and sleeve design by Kitty Hopking
    Released by Net of Gems
    Distributed by All Night Flight Records

    Includes unlimited streaming of Balafon Sketches via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
    ... more

    Sold Out

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Okutama 07:00

about

The first self-release from Contours.

Balafon Sketches began as a series of live jams in Cumbria. Percussionist and producer Contours & instrument builder, musician, painter and ceramicist Seth Sutton experimented with balafons and a gamelan alongside Sutton’s homemade string and percussive instrumentation. The tracks’ foundations were built running these elements of tuned percussion through delay and reverb pedals, experimenting with interlocking polyrhythms and the overtones and textures created by the raw recordings.

Contours built upon these recordings utilising a range of live instrumentation such as synthesizers, drum machines and other organic percussion. He worked alongside several instrumentalists: cellist Abel Selaocoe and saxophonist/ flautist Callum Connell feature on ‘Keld’, violinist Simmy Singh on ‘45npr’, and violinist Beka Reid on ‘Eastern Bells’.

Balafon Sketches sees the coming together of electronic and organic instrumentation. It crosses musical traditions that makes for a sonic journey, taking as much influence from African rhythmic practice as it does from minimalism, electronic music and the transcendental nature of ambient music and spiritual jazz.

This release is the organic output of spontaneous experimentation with friends, and was entirely recorded in our homes in Manchester and Cumbria.

Each tape features a hand-printed linocut by Kitty Hopking.

100% of profits from the cassette and digital release will be donated to Kids of Colour and Colours Youth Network.

Kids of Colour is a Manchester-based organisation that provides a platform for young people of colour to explore race, identity and culture and challenge the everyday, institutionalised racism that shapes their lives.
www.kidsofcolour.com

Colours Youth Network supports young Black and people of colour who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer, intersex (QTIBPOC) to explore and celebrate who they are through meaningful connections to other young people and a team of experienced QTIBPOC youth workers.
www.gofundme.com/f/colours-youth-network

credits

released July 3, 2020

Seth Sutton: Gamelan, percussion & homemade instrumentation
Abel Selaocoe: Cello
Callum Connell: Saxophone & flute
Simmy Singh: Violin
Beka Reid: Violin
Tom Burford: Production, balafon, gamelan, percussion, drum machine, synthesizer, RE20 space echo & field recordings

Mastering: Dominic Clare @ Declared Sound
Tape Duplication: Tape Line Stockport

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about

Contours England, UK

Contours is the project of musician, producer and DJ Tom Burford. Based in Cumbria, Contours’ sound explores the spaces, rhythms and textures that sit between House, Jazz, broken-beat, Hip Hop and percussive obscurities.

Drum machines, synthesisers, live percussion, samples and field recordings create an infectious blend of the electronic and the organic, the live and the programmed.
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