A Drifting Population
by Agitated Radio Pilot
Deserted Village : DV9 : 2004
Semi-improvised electric guitar meloncholica inspired by rambling through the Australian outback. Also features a haunting piano impromptu recorded in an abandoned house somewhere in the outback.
Originally released in 2004 with different cover art, A Drifting Population was re-released in a limited edition of 30 in late 2006. A good decision, because this little gem deserved to get our attention again.
These are eleven instrumental tracks inspired by David Colohan's travels through Australia in 2000. As Dave writes in his liner notes, they are meant to capture the feelings of a life on the move, of being part of 'a drifting population'. The result is a fine selection of moody lo-fi tracks, played on electric guitar to a four-track recorder. The sound quality is quite poor, with a sharp hiss overlaying all the tracks, yet it does not distract from the honest quality of these little compositions. All of them capture that unique, melancholic feeling I was writing about, and actual mental images of the things David is describing musically are never far away. Besides this unique, slightly nostalgic, quality, there are several tracks which have exceptionally beautiful melodies. "You are further away from me now than ever before" is such a track, very sweet and sad. "Under the southern cross" has a bit of a dark touch to it, and "The Pornography / Pet Store, Young" also has a beautiful, melancholic melody. The tenth track, "The ebb & flow of distant moonlit grass" is an extended ambient piece, which calls to mind the nighttime images of this long journey. Dark, brooding, and very good. The final track is the odd one out, recorded in a place called Katoomba, straight from piano to dictaphone, which accounts for the abysmal sound. Yet it fits with the theme. Fleeting, broken musical images of an influential personal journey. Thanks to Dave for sharing.
If you highly value production quality, best leave this alone. But if you are into lo-fi, or dig the calm, melancholic sound of Agitated Radio Pilot, this is highly recommended.
Evening of Light