+ Indie version is pressed on azure blue coloured vinyl, limited to just 400 copies.
British synthesist Stephen James Buckley returns to the Castle in Space label for the release of a brand new Polypores record.
'Azure' is a beautiful new age symphony of blissed out water music.
It’s his first full length LP since the release of last year’s “Flora”.
'Flora' was included in several end of year best of charts last year including Electronic Sound and Norman Records best of 2019.
Stephen explains the genesis of 'Azure':
“As with a lot of my music at the moment, the original inspiration from Azure started out with the music itself, rather than an initial concept. That is, it came through playing. I noticed that a lot of what I was writing seemed to lend itself to water imagery. It was flowing, fluid, bubbling. The album was written late 2019, when it seemed to be perpetually raining, so that might have been a factor.
I was also listening to a lot of new-age music at the time. Whilst I didn’t purposely set out to do a "new-age" album as such, I think a lot of that crept in there - but with it's own Polypores-esque twist. Rather than working in a specific genre, I much prefer to take elements and signifiers from a genre, and warp them into my own vision.
Once I'd decided to go down this route the writing became more focussed, and I was also able to immerse myself in various books, films, and documentaries related to the ocean, particularly the mythology and lore surrounding it. I imagined this to be the music that the sunken stone heads from Easter Island would have on their record players. A relaxation tape for dolphins.
The album was created with a modular synthesizer, which was still fairly new to me at the time. As with most of my music, it was a fairly quick process, as I tend to record live rather than overdubbing/multi-tracking. I find this way of writing more immediate, it gives me a more direct link to my creativity, without too much thought or analysis getting in the way. I used a lot of New-Age type sounds, and one of the tracks uses a Gamelan scale. I made heavy use of granular synthesis on the human voice, to create the choir sounds.
I think I did subconsciously want to create something similar to Flora. Not sonically (as it's a very different sound palette) but more the idea of it being an exaggerated, almost fantastical response to an environment. So whilst Flora takes place in the forest, Azure takes place in the ocean, but both focus on the fantasy elements, as opposed to the mundane or harsh reality. I wasn't going to do an album about overfishing or something. It's a form of escapism I suppose.
Some interesting facts about the album are:
- One of the tracks has a short sample from the soundtrack to a well-known 1990s point-and-click adventure game, set deep in the Caribbean,
- I was listening to 'Rime Of The Ancient Mariner' by Iron Maiden a lot around the time of writing.”
Castles in Space presents ”Azure” in a deluxe azure blue vinyl pressing in a full gloss varnished sleeve and foldback tabs.
The LP includes a new, beautiful art print by the album sleeve designer, Nick Taylor. French comic book legend Moebius was an inspiration for Nick along with taking direction from the luxurious flow of the music.
2. Warm Currents
3. Among Sunken Stone Heads
7. Fathoms Down
10. Coral Palaces
12. Mysticeti (Bonus Track)
- About Drift
+ Free Shipping
We offer free delivery on orders of £75 and over, sent within mainland UK. To qualify for free delivery, your order will be sent as one dispatch. If your order includes items that are not in stock at the point of ordering - specifically preorder items - then please expect to wait until all items are available to ship as one delivery. If you are waiting for a box to ship, you are most welcome to add more items to your box, up to the point we ship it to you, but this is not automated so it's always important to tell us you are doing this.
+ Click & Collect
On all orders, we offer a Click & Collect option for you to come and collect your order in Totnes. You will be offered shipping and click & collect options during the checkout process. More info here.
* If you purchase a pre-order item amongst an order of in-stock releases, we will typically hold your box until all items are in stock.
* If you are adding to an order, we advise you contact us when placing the additional order to make sure we notice.
* We aim to dispatch orders placed before 1pm, on the same day.
* We ship outside the UK with DHL.
* For all shoppers in the USA and in the EU, we offer Royal Mail's International Business Parcel Tracked service for your releases. We also offer the more premium DHL Express service.
* We are unable to ship orders on Sundays or Bank Holidays.
* Although we use all reasonable means to ensure that your order is delivered within a specified time, we cannot accept any responsibility for late deliveries due to circumstances outside of our control. We will do our best to inform you of any unexpected delay.
* Royal Mail First Class services do not have tracking.
* Royal Mail Tracked 24® does include end-to-end tracking.
If you have any questions about shipping or delivery, get in touch.
Royal Mail Tracked 24®
End-to-end tracking and next-day delivery
✔️ End-to-end tracking
✔️ SMS or email notifications
✔️ Next working day delivery aim
✔️ Compensation cover up to £100
✔️ Change your delivery options before delivery is attempted
International Business Parcel Tracked
✔️ Track your package every step of the way
✔️ Signature on delivery
✔️ Free tracked returns for undelivered items
✔️ Compensation cover up to £100
Come meet us, or have us ship you something in the post.