"stop, close your eyes and get lost in it…" The 405
Silver Pyre (aka Gary Fawle) has been gestating for a few years following two well received EPs "i)" and "ii)" released in the late 2000s. During the ensuing radio silence he has crafted and re-crafted his sparse, enthralling debut album, AeXE (pronounced "ax").
The mysticism and myth-making of British history has been explored by artists in many ways over the years and continues to provide inspiration. Growing up in Somerset surrounded by neolithic heritage, land layers, ancient architecture and concealed industrial pasts Gary Fawle is no stranger to the sensations that these inspire.
The influences are vast - visual, structural, musical. Drawing upon folk music in both the literal and metaphorical sense, there is a strong forward-thinking element to the music - Fawle's formative musical influences are apparent throughout the record; early Autechre releases, Black Dog, Aphex Twin; Music that was created for the post-rave/freeparty scene - a form of folk music in its own right. Clearly though, this cannot be described as an Electronic record - you can hear the romanticism of Robert Wyatt, the benign and sublime of the Fall, intelligent 80s pop music like Talk Talk.
AeXE was built in various towns and locations throughout England over a period of 3 years. Fawle had moved around the country since leaving his home as a teenager for art college in London. After this time, he returned to Somerset, living in a barn and working as a psychiatric nurse whilst he recorded his first two EPs. Moving on, he lived in various towns, including an abandoned factory studio in Norfolk - another area rich in landscapes and water worlds - and started to form the basis of the tracks that would eventually make AeXE.
Inevitably, the west country called him back and he returned to his home county, developing the songs that would form the album - parts of the record were even recorded in a Lime Kiln on the Somerset levels.
Though most of the writing comes from Fawle, he called upon friend Tom Bugs (BugBrand Modular synths) to help contribute to the sounds and rhythm as they developed music for a live setting and the songs began to morph into what is recognizable on AeXE.
Fawle performs solo, as a duo (with David Edwards of Minotaur Shock) and occasionally as a three piece (adding David Collingwood of Gravenhurst/Yann Tiersen's band) and spends his time in Bristol - a city renowned for it's industrial past and electronic heritage.
The cover photo depicts the Jurassic coast in Dorset whilst the disc artwork is taken from the painting "Urn Burial" by artist Sam Douglas (samdouglas.co.uk/) - an old friend of Fawle's and fellow Somerset native who has drawn from a similar vein of heritage.