L. Pierre – Dip
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‘…Moffat hasn’t just suceeded in composing cinematic music. He’s actually captured picture-less cinema.’ XLR8R
‘Someone give this man some proper film soundtrack work, please.’ The Observer
Following the shock announcement of the Arab Strap split, here’s some good news for fans of Aidan Moffat’s side project, L. Pierre – there’s a new album, Dip, on the horizon. Written and recorded before the Arab Strap breakup was finalised, Dip explores a quieter, more contemplative side of Moffat’s musical personality.
“My favourite L. Pierre tracks have always been the quiet ones so I wanted to pursue that mood and record something gentle and lovely,” he says. “I also took a shine to field recording and bought myself a little Minidisc recorder, which I took on holiday to record some natural ambience.”
A giant sideways leap from the critically acclaimed Hypnogogia (2002) and Touchpool (2004), Dip finds Moffat eschewing the drum loops and effects that characterised his previous recordings in favour of a more organic, live sound, with a specially assembled group of Alan Barr (cello), Stevie Jones (double bass) and Allan Wylie (trumpet) complementing Moffat on drums, keyboards, percussion and harmonium. The result is an album that takes us on a journey through the full range of human emotions, from Ache’s morose, mournful strings to the frantic, jesterly Hike. Ending as it begins, with the sound of the waves crashing against the shore, there’s a sense of oneness to the album, as if it could play forever as a song cycle. This, says Moffat, is because Dip was conceived as a whole album, rather than a collection of odds and ends.
“The album had a concept from the beginning,” he says. “Its theme is nature and the great outdoors, and particularly the sea, hence ‘Dip’, a title I stole from the movie of the artist who kindly donated the film images for the artwork.”
So this is it; the sound of one of our generation’s great chroniclers of urban squalor and messy relationships contemplating the mysteries of Mother Nature and delivering a dreamlike, immersive album as a result. But it’s not necessarily an avenue Moffat will revisit any time soon.
“I hear dance music is all the rage again,” he says. “Maybe I’ll reinvent myself as a superstar DJ. I’d make more money that way anyway.”