This four-track album imagines the sound of British summertime as heard by one of the most important members of the animal kingdom – the bee. A hypnotic conceptualisation of the life, work and living environment of the bee, “One” is a truly transcendental record – think Spacemen 3 recording a series of 21st century outdoor ragas for Touch Records and you’re somewhere in the right direction.
“One” is the soundtrack to artist Wolfgang Buttress’ multiple award winning UK Pavilion at the 2015 Milan Expo – an installation that highlighted the plight of the honeybee, focusing on the importance of pollination. The music on the record is a constantly changing and evolving symphony – the sound of a dialogue between bee and human.
The album was recorded by musicians Kev Bales and Tony Foster – a duo known for working with Spiritualized, Julian Cope, Dave Gahan and Mark Lanegan, amongst many others. Other musicians featured on the record include Jason Pierce, Youth, cellist Deidre Bencsik, vocalist Camille Buttress and Amiina (the string section regularly used by Sigur Ros). The recording sessions saw musicians improvising in the key of C along to a live audio feed of beehive sounds. Piano, Mellotron and lap steel were overdubbed later. The result is a unique piece of truly meditative music.
This has become one of the most important albums of my life. It’s essence is indescribable. Every sound from the start of the record through the end is placed delicately and with care. The album cover is by Julie Mehretu. It’s absolutely an incredible release for which I shall be eternally grateful. Aniket