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The Caretaker Releases New Album
Rory Gibb , January 4th, 2012 12:18

Patience (After Sebald) for release in LP and CD form at the end of January

James Kirby has announced the release of a new album as The Caretaker, Patience (After Sebald), on January 23rd. It arrives after a busy year in 2011, with the release of an album and three 12"s under his Leyland Kirby moniker and An Empty Bliss Beyond This World as The Caretaker.

Patience is a soundtrack to Grant Gee's film about German writer WG Sebald. It's described as a 'multi-layered film essay on landscape, art, history, life and loss', told through a long walk along the coast of East Anglia. Gee originally asked Kirby to soundtrack the film back in 2009. To put together the music, Kirby tracked down Franz Schubert records from 1927 which are now long out of copyright, and like the rest of his Caretaker records assembled the final piece from degraded shards and samples of the originals. It's a fractured, brooding and very beautiful listen, its pianos half-vanished in vinyl crackle, static and murk.

In an interview with the Quietus last year, Kirby spoke briefly about Patience, saying that it had been recorded before the last Caretaker album, but that it was "a lot more of a winter album, a lot darker".

He also spoke in depth about the inspirations behind the Caretaker project, which takes as its source point ideas of memory, mind, consciousness and mental illness. "In a strange way, recently memory has become very important for everybody," he said, "as we are always sold the idea of capture and recollection via the internet these days. Store your life, manage your memories, share your experiences, to the point that [there are] people out there who feel under so much pressure to do this that they don’t actually live at all now. Time, too, when we get older, also appears in different ways. When you’re a child everything seems to run in slow motion. [As we get] older our perception of time changes and everything seems to go at double speed, as making time is always precious. Maybe my recent work is influenced by the ongoing realisation that we don’t have many days, really, to make any kind of impact, and often things seem completely pointless and nonsensical."

Read the full interview here.

Patience (After Sebald) is released on limited vinyl on 23rd January, with CD digipak version to come later.

James Leyland Kirby plays a rare live show in London on January 27th at Jonny Mugwump's 'Night In The Haunted Dancehall' evening, alongside Raime and King Midas Sound. It comes thoroughly recommended. Buy tickets here.

Grant Gee's film Patience (After Sebald) is being shown at the ICA, London from 27th January to 2nd February. More information here.