Monday, October 16, 2017
Listen: Cosmo Sheldrake - "Come Along"
The last I actually heard from English multi-instrumentalist/producer Cosmo Sheldrake, it was when I had essentially followed him around CMJ 2015, he's since done a couple of dates in the UK but remained relatively quiet as he worked on his debut full length record and follow up to his Pelicans We EP. Now with a Europe tour with Johnny Flynn underway and his own headlining tour to follow soon after, he's decided to set free "Come Along", the first single from his aforementioned work-in-progress debut full length.
On his auspicious return "Come Along", Sheldrake essentially swings for the fences going the absolute biggest he can. There's a large grandiose build full of brass fanfare before everything dips out and Sheldrake's vocals enter. Much like his most exciting Pelicans We cuts, Sheldrake balances English folk and folklore references with polished production. Though his aim is dramaticism, that doesn't mean Sheldrake's lost his subtle touch and his builds are organic, his deployment woodwinds and glockenspiel in the quieter moments are spectacularly intricate enough that the first beat-heavy climactic peak is almost unexpected. "Come Along" essentially luxuriates in these ebbs and flows while Sheldrake uses them to display not only his mastery of typical pop songcraft but his more singer/songwriter rooted lyricism while "Come Along" itself is an piece of artful production. Sheldrake hears music in everything and much like his previous songs built on some unexpected and decidedly nonmusical element like rock-splitting on "Rich" or NASA captured sound of the sun in the appropriately named "Solar", "Come Along" features the sound of a vacuum cleaner in addition to an Armenian duduk and field recordings of people juba dancing in New Orleans all seamlessly stitched together with Sheldrake's own man-made additions. Sheldrake's manages to effortlessly weave his naturalistic influences and sample archivist tendencies with such precision that it transcends mere gimmickry, instead they're an nearly impermeable layer in his music that illustrate his innovation without distracting from his obvious musicianship.
Much like his musical setting of William Blake in "The Fly" or his Alice and Wonderland referencing "The Moss", "Come Along" is derived for a similar love of prose and poetry, with Sheldrake referencing heffalumps from A.A. Milne's Winnie the Pooh stories. Sheldrake's music is delightfully English featuring various winks and nods to staples of British culture but shifting the sense of traditional classicism into the modern day.
Considering how eclectic Cosmo Sheldrake's interests, inspirations, and influences are, there's no telling what his debut full length album will end up sounding like but based off Pelicans We and the incredible first offering of "Come Along", it will certainly be an innovate take on electronic music and I for one can't wait. Unfortunately fans of Sheldrake will as apart from confirming it exists, there's no news of when the album will drop. Until then though "Come Along" will do nicely.