Cults Percussion Ensemble
Here's another delightful recording which has just popped through the A Sound Awareness letterbox. This time, an oddly beautiful compendium of tuned percussion music, wonderfully played by an ensemble of Aberdeenshire school children. All twelve tracks were recorded and issued privately in 1979, with financial support by Grampian Regional Council and Aberdeen Educational Trust, with the resultant lp to be sold at concerts while the ensemble toured the United Kingdom, Germany and France. In my many years of scouring charity shops, jumbles sales and early morning carboots I've never even had a sighting of this elusive gem and I have a sneaking suspicion that many a proud 'Granite City' grannie or grandad have multiple mint copies sitting underneath their beds waiting to be bequeathed to future generations as precious family heirlooms. The copy I acquired came via a rather odd Yorkshire antique dealer who liked to send records in recycled pizza boxes. Luckily, the aforementioned pizza boxes hadn't been used prior to delivery. The recording itself is very peculiar, combining child like exotic percussion flourishes and eerie, swirling sound tones, all beautifully played with a melancholic innocence only youth can muster. Years ago, when I first heard this record, I instantly thought of Jonny Trunk. It's like the perfect Trunk record and it seems fitting he's decided to reissue it. What's not to love, there's spectral vibraphonic glissando, impish flourishes played on glockenspiels, proto hip hop drum breaks played on timpani drums and fourteen year old musicians conjuring all sorts of weird little shimmering sound shapes of sonic wonder on every composition. It's very enchanting stuff indeed. I should probably also mention that the record features a fourteen year old Dame Evelyn Glennie and a rather fine beige sleeve, which according to the sleeve notes, Jonny Trunk decided was too beige for a contemporary audience. I guess he's right. Head over to Trunk HQ to find out a little more.