Today, sees the release of “Bridges”, the new video from influential electronic folk/experimental artist Cars & Trains (Tom Filepp). The track is off his current release Fictions, available via indie hip-hop label Fake Four Inc. (Ceschi, Astronautalis).
Tom Filepp on the video:
“The Bridges video is what happens when you put me in the woods with my good friend Big Pauper, and a camera. We shuffled around in the Oaks Bottom Wildlife Refuge in Portland on a very hot day this summer, and then BP worked some of his BPMC circuit bent video magic to make it shine. Think of it as a video communique being saturated with interference and noise from the spectacle of everyday life in 2017.”
Fictions was recorded and mixed by Filepp at his Portland, Oregon home studio, was equally inspired by the distant reverb sounds of electric era Miles Davis and early Brian Eno. Thematically Filepp explores many themes common to his past music, while weaving in subtle commentary on current events and inspirations from wide ranging influences like dystopian David Bowie lyrics and Jorge Luis Borges. The name of the album itself is lifted from Borges’ story collection Ficciones. As a record, Fictions is a fitting follow-up to the 2015 Cars & Trains instrumental album Dust, as well as Filepp’s electronic sludge-pop record Particles, under the project True Deceiver.
Some of the dark timbre and heavy echo from previous project True Deceiver sneak their way into the corridors of Fictions, alongside analog synths, guitars, distorted bass, and Filepp’s trademark toy instruments. Hidden around the corner from subtle glitches and organic electronic drums, you can find bits of piano—marking the first time Filepp has recorded piano on a record. One of the sonic threads that holds the whole together is a near constant of lush, fluttering strings, contributed by Kyleen King (Swansea) on violin and Jessie Dettwiler (Alameda, Lenore) on cello. Additional percussion and vocals provided by Matt Harmon and Kali Giaritta (There Is No Mountain) add extra depth. Fictions also sneaks in a reworked version of the song “Every Morning” that originally appeared on Factor’s 2010 album Lawson Graham, remade as a slow-builder, buoyed by delicate strings and brooding vocals.
“New Histories”, the chaotically beautiful and meandering closing track on Fictions, is the single instrumental song on the record. The song walks in movements through a tribute to Filepp’s friend and labelmate Johnny Igaz, who tragically passed in the Oakland Ghost Ship fire in December 2016. The track wordlessly sketches his tribute as Filepp processes the loss, ending in a circular, airy and uplifting movement that gives a proper and fitting send-off to his friend.