Cool Cool: Vinyl LP
James Alexander Bright

Cool Cool: Vinyl LP

AOTNLP171
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Pre-Order Item. Release Date Subject to Change.
Label: Athens of the North
Release Date: 26th July

Yah yah yah Cool Cool, yah, I'm totally vibing on the mutant disco funk of James Alexander Bright, bringing together an 80s AOR disco rock, the underground club electro disco and bedroom disco auteurism of Beck. DISCO.

A vibrant kaleidoscope of sound, colour and emotion, British multi-hyphenate James Alexander Bright's new album 'Cool Cool' is set for release on 26th July via Athens Of The North. A dynamic set of urgent funkers, gentle soul ballads, head-nodders, fuzzy folkers and straight-up disco bangers span 10 songs that soundtrack fertile daydreams, esoteric dancefloors, languorous reflection, and wild excursions in nature and beyond.

 

James' voice, pitched somewhere between Eddie Chacon, Beck and Michael McDonald, takes a confident lead on this new record. Whether tenderly caressing on the title track's beautiful soul minimalism or deployed passionately on boogie machine 'Straight Line'; it's an immediately recognisable signature. Impressive multi-instrumentalism sees him perform on guitar, bass, keys, programming, percussion, production and myriad quirky effects; across song subjects that cover searching for truth, imagining the distant future, teen nostalgia, relaxation exploration, aspirations of freedom, and classic tales of love and romance.

 

"'Straight Line' started out as a wonky homage to 80s & 90s radio", says James. "It's based on the memory of meeting someone you want to stay up all night listening to music with". Disco highlight 'Your Love' is"based on the feeling of love and chasing it. It has a certain kinetic charm but holds a melancholic note also". Similarly, on soulful paean to romance 'Fall For You' James explains"You know when you've loved. To love is a magical thing whether it's an experience, an object, or a person; we've all loved and lost".

 

"'Cool Cool' is the most stripped back song I've ever written,"he confesses."Recorded in one afternoon with no special effects or production tricks, it feels quite timeless". In contrast the uninhibited 'Aguas Blancas' flexes with exuberance. James explains"It's a homage to one of my favourite beaches on the island of Ibiza. I was imagining being there as I made this. What's not to like about big waves, a buzzing beach shack bar, and nudity?".

 

As always with James' music, what started as a solo endeavour organically morphed into more of a family affair. Initially written and recorded at his home studio in the rolling hills of the Hampshire countryside, the tracks on 'Cool Cool' were completed in sessions with regular collaborator Peter Lyons in East London and Linkwood at Athens Of The North in Edinburgh. Old friends and new contribute vocals (Kerry Leatham and Katharine Alice), drums (Gillan McLaughlin and Joris Feiertag), and synths (Reuben Vaun Smith on 'Aguas Blancas'), plus collaborations with Wolverhampton electronic duo Letherette on 'I Feel Alive' and Ugandan/Nottingham singer-songwriter and guitarist Daudi Matsiko on 'Hear'.

 

James says"Some of these people I was in bands with as a kid, which is a pretty magical thing. I've been a fan of Letherette for years so it was a buzz when I asked Andrew to work on some tracks together and he was really into it. When Daudi shared a guitar part he wasn't sure what to do with on his Instagram stories, I messaged him to say "I'll make a track out of this!" and that then became 'Hear'".

 

The past six years has seen James release a veritable treasure trove of music: 'Mallorca' and 'Strange Folk' EPs, debut album 'Headroom', joyous second 'Float', an album of collaborations and reworks with cosmic Americana-disco DJ/producer duo Flying Mojito Bros, and a new project with Groove Armada's Tom Findlay as Bright & Findlay.

 

James balances music alongside the creative duality of a job in illustration and the responsibilities and constraints that come with raising a young family. Utilising any spare moment to write and record new ideas, his creative output under various projects had been relentless. Turning his back on apathetic major label offers in his early 20s, he's released through cult DIY label Tape Club Records, German stalwart !K7 Music and now with Scottish tastemaker Athens Of The North, presenting an evolving vision of a sound that has touched on everything from outsider art-rock to machine funk, mystic folk to experimental jazz.

A vibrant kaleidoscope of sound, colour and emotion, British multi-hyphenate James Alexander Bright's new album 'Cool Cool' is set for release on 26th July via Athens Of The North. A dynamic set of urgent funkers, gentle soul ballads, head-nodders, fuzzy folkers and straight-up disco bangers span 10 songs that soundtrack fertile daydreams, esoteric dancefloors, languorous reflection, and wild excursions in nature and beyond.

 

James' voice, pitched somewhere between Eddie Chacon, Beck and Michael McDonald, takes a confident lead on this new record. Whether tenderly caressing on the title track's beautiful soul minimalism or deployed passionately on boogie machine 'Straight Line'; it's an immediately recognisable signature. Impressive multi-instrumentalism sees him perform on guitar, bass, keys, programming, percussion, production and myriad quirky effects; across song subjects that cover searching for truth, imagining the distant future, teen nostalgia, relaxation exploration, aspirations of freedom, and classic tales of love and romance.

 

"'Straight Line' started out as a wonky homage to 80s & 90s radio", says James. "It's based on the memory of meeting someone you want to stay up all night listening to music with". Disco highlight 'Your Love' is"based on the feeling of love and chasing it. It has a certain kinetic charm but holds a melancholic note also". Similarly, on soulful paean to romance 'Fall For You' James explains"You know when you've loved. To love is a magical thing whether it's an experience, an object, or a person; we've all loved and lost".

 

"'Cool Cool' is the most stripped back song I've ever written,"he confesses."Recorded in one afternoon with no special effects or production tricks, it feels quite timeless". In contrast the uninhibited 'Aguas Blancas' flexes with exuberance. James explains"It's a homage to one of my favourite beaches on the island of Ibiza. I was imagining being there as I made this. What's not to like about big waves, a buzzing beach shack bar, and nudity?".

 

As always with James' music, what started as a solo endeavour organically morphed into more of a family affair. Initially written and recorded at his home studio in the rolling hills of the Hampshire countryside, the tracks on 'Cool Cool' were completed in sessions with regular collaborator Peter Lyons in East London and Linkwood at Athens Of The North in Edinburgh. Old friends and new contribute vocals (Kerry Leatham and Katharine Alice), drums (Gillan McLaughlin and Joris Feiertag), and synths (Reuben Vaun Smith on 'Aguas Blancas'), plus collaborations with Wolverhampton electronic duo Letherette on 'I Feel Alive' and Ugandan/Nottingham singer-songwriter and guitarist Daudi Matsiko on 'Hear'.

 

James says"Some of these people I was in bands with as a kid, which is a pretty magical thing. I've been a fan of Letherette for years so it was a buzz when I asked Andrew to work on some tracks together and he was really into it. When Daudi shared a guitar part he wasn't sure what to do with on his Instagram stories, I messaged him to say "I'll make a track out of this!" and that then became 'Hear'".

 

The past six years has seen James release a veritable treasure trove of music: 'Mallorca' and 'Strange Folk' EPs, debut album 'Headroom', joyous second 'Float', an album of collaborations and reworks with cosmic Americana-disco DJ/producer duo Flying Mojito Bros, and a new project with Groove Armada's Tom Findlay as Bright & Findlay.

 

James balances music alongside the creative duality of a job in illustration and the responsibilities and constraints that come with raising a young family. Utilising any spare moment to write and record new ideas, his creative output under various projects had been relentless. Turning his back on apathetic major label offers in his early 20s, he's released through cult DIY label Tape Club Records, German stalwart !K7 Music and now with Scottish tastemaker Athens Of The North, presenting an evolving vision of a sound that has touched on everything from outsider art-rock to machine funk, mystic folk to experimental jazz.


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