Midday Veil Release Track from Upcoming Album – “Babel” Featuring Bernie Worrell
Over the past six years, my band Midday Veil has released two LPs and a handful of cassettes and CDRs on our own label Translinguistic Other. I’m proud of the work we have done, but it has been a long and grueling process, one which has often necessitated that I spend as much time sending out promo emails, packaging and shipping physical records all over the world as I spend working on my music and art. This is why I am thrilled that for the first time, Midday Veil will be working with an outside record label for our next album. Brooklyn-based label Beyond Beyond is Beyond will be releasing Midday Veil’s third studio album This Wilderness on LP, CD and digital formats on September 11, 2015.
Last week, we released “Babel,” the album’s first single. This song is also the album opener, and conceptually sets the stage for the rest of the record, which invokes, among other things, the complexities (and ultimately, self-destructiveness) implicit in the codifying impulse:
this wilderness amazes me but covers me with shame / when I aspire to codify the thing that has no name
This feeling may be familiar to many artists, philosophers, theologians, and even scientists; indeed, anyone who bumps up against the risk of obscuring (or even profaning) the nature of that which is observed by sheer virtue of framing one’s observations.
The rhythmic heart of the song is both electronic and acoustic, featuring Garrett Moore’s live drumming to a sequenced drum machine so that the song moves in a way that feels organic and syncopated, yet gridded. (Garrett has been a touring member of Midday Veil since 2012 but this is his first studio album with the band; his contributions have moved us in new directions that will be immediately evident to those who have been following the band’s trajectory.)
Anyway, as luck would have it, funk legend Bernie Worrell happened to be in Seattle working on a different project, also being produced by Randall Dunn, at the same time that we were working on This Wilderness. Randall hired David to be Bernie’s keyboard tech for this project, a fusion band called Khu.éex’ assembled by Tlingit artist Preston Singletary to combine jazz with traditional Native storytelling. David and Bernie hit it off—(you can’t not hit it off with Bernie Worrell, the man is a cosmic angel who calls successful improvisations “blessings”)—and Randall suggested that we invite Bernie to play on our album.
Bernie contributed clavinet and Hammond tracks to the final mix of “Babel.” Here’s a video I’m so grateful that I shot in the studio of Bernie improvising the clavinet line that ended up being used on the album.
Additional musicians on this track are Timm Mason (bass), David Golightly (synths), Garrett Moore (drums), Jayson Kochan (guitar), Tor Dietrichson (congas), Skerik & Steve Moore (horns) and Emily Pothast (vocals).
This Wilderness will be released September 11, 2015 via Beyond Beyond is Beyond. Preorder Midday Veil – This Wilderness here.