Brassica presents Temple Fortune; a beautiful, bittersweet EP of synth-steeped electronic music and the producer’s debut for Civil Music. The record was created during a year of musical experimentation and inspired by club experiences, both good and bad, childhood memories and existential anxiety.
Incorporating analog synths, vintage drum machines, rave nostalgia, 80's electronic pop, cosmic slow jams, avant-garde electronics and a melancholic crush of Italo, Electro and disco bearing vocals, Brassica's music remembers much - memories that are worth the price of admission alone - but drawing in part on the urban solitude each evokes and coupling with feelings humid and raw, the music of Michael Anthony Wright is able to express so much more, a quiet storm of musical restraint and emotive power. Aligning music with that of greats such as Throbbing Gristle, New Order, Joy Division, Cabaret Voltaire is a daunting prospect; but gazing out of the sensual and emotional 'Temple Fortune' is an artist showing the vision and individuality to place himself among such exquisite talent.
Resonating with ghostly funk, intimate and sagely Temple Fortune is intelligent and immersive. Haunting lead track Modern Magic is equal parts theatrical, romantic and wrenching. Led by a bass line (from a fretless bass guitar) which sees the spectral image of Joy Division’s Peter Hook alive and well, it features live drums, restless vocals and long, slow, constellation mapping synth lines. The playful/woeful space jam of Lose Him follows, and includes the vocal of long time friend 'Stuart Warwick'. A nervous death dance interspersed with (ware)house bass lines and sinister synths intensify over a furtive playground chant. Milieux Metrix includes the hushed voice of Ghostape. Bass heavy disco stomps and key lead synths swirl alongside strange sounds while low vibrato cello calls give tension/release to the disorientating ancient meets the modern age theme. The EP closes with the soulful, ghostly rave of Lydden Circuit. The rushing anxeity and dancefloor disquiet have somewhat made an underground hero of Brassica for a quiet generation of lost ravers. (To which the comments on the self made & mesmerizing video appearing almost a year ago on youtube attest.) Add a floor ready acid disco remix from Capracara, & Om Unit’s consistently unique take on the footwork sound adding a new dimension to his rework, this is quite a package.
Brassica views his music as a highly personal, pure distillation of his own experiences. As a child his desire to “go beyond listening” and “somehow get around the back” initially manifested itself at a very early age - modifying the family tape deck, removing the erase function to endlessly overdub and create cassette tape collages. Entering his teens rave happened. religiously attending local under-18’s raves he indulged in Ratpack, Slipmatt, DJ Hype & more. Subsequent spells in various prog, hardcore and metal bands developed into adventures in experimental music and performances with the London Sinfonietta + airings of his compositions on BBC Radio 3. However a realisation that "chin-stroking, experimental music buffs actually cared less about the music than the¬ party people, who were physically showing their appreciation for the sounds they heard" lead him to his ongoing love affair with italo, nu-disco, house and synth-based sounds. His first output was immediately snapped up by innovative underground labels, including Andy Blake’s Dissident, Tartaruga and Cyber Dance, simultaneously inducing feverish excitement from tastemakers 20 Jazz Funk Greats, Vice, BICEP and more, and paving the way for the Temple Fortune EP, his most accomplished offering yet.
The Temple Fortune EP will be available from 19th November on 12" & Download from Civil Music. A nostalgic trip through the past of synth-led music this is not. Cerebral and pioneering it exhibits an ahead-of-his-time mind in full flow, it is a monument to passion, energy, and cathartic despair.