Philip Clemo ‘Dream Maps’ (All Colour Arts) 3/5

philip-clemoIf improvised music and electronica with a dose of jazz meets with your approval, then guitarist, electronic beats and voice merchant Philip Clemo is likely to appeal. This is an ethereal musical experience and enhanced by a long list of jazz musicians and others, that includes trumpeters Arve Henriksen, Henry Lowthe and Byron Wallen with a host of cellists and drummers of the calibre of Martins France and Ditcham respectively. What comes across are the layered textures of acoustic and electronica sounds, as on the lovely double bass and cellos that combine on, ‘Water in the flow’. Factor in the voice of Evi Vine on the beat driven, ‘Magnetic’, and you have a most interesting cross-pollination of influences.
For jazz fans, the understated trumpet of Henriksen emerges on the gradual build up of sound on, ‘Liberation’, that finally reaches a crescendo. At best once could make a strong case for this music being the ideal accompaniment to an indie film soundtrack, but the question does nonetheless need to be asked of whether it goes beyond a certain level of creativity, with a series of repetitive motifs. Ideally, this writer would like to hear a greater degree of interaction and improvisation between the acoustic and electronica parts. That said, a worthy project and certainly enough musicality to retain the listener’s interest throughout.

Tim Stenhouse