25-year old Bristol based multi-instrumentalist Memotone (aka William Yates) returns with a bleak, beautiful and politicised new album. His new album "CHIME HOURS" follows his stunning debut LP "I Sleep. At Walking." A master of 11 instruments, Memotone comes from a family of artists and grew up on a diet of grunge, minimal classical compositions and electronic music. Yates is also an illustrator and film composer (he recently sound-tracked a horror serial produced by Eli Roth), something that runs deep within his avant-garde productions.
Creating an otherworldly sate of mind with sonic soundscapes, the albums roots twists around rural horror, techno and neo-classical sounds mixed with field recordings documenting archaic seasonal ceremonies. From the spiralling darkness and crackled techno pulse of "Poison Arrow" to Memotone's ghostly melodies intersecting brutal electronics on "All Collapsed", the album buzzes with a variation of moods and ideas from an artist not afraid to run the full gamut of emotions.
Emphasizing texture over tone, "CHIME HOURS" is heavily centered around the sounds of a analogue synthesizer, whilst also featuring live cello, piano, clarinet, violin, church organ, guitars/bass and trumpet that’s given a distorted twist. The album also sees Memotone bring his voice further forward; creating brief flourishes of glimmering effects.
On tracks "All Collapsed" and "You Saw the Future" Memotone toys with ideas surrounding a post apocalyptic world that's stripped bare by humans, whereas the rest of the album takes influence from The Middle Ages; rituals, civil war, gritty hand to hand combat and a fear of ghosts and the religion that surrounds them. Memotone recorded the rituals practiced at a folk celebration in a village near where he grew up, explaining that: "I thought, perhaps there is a reflection of our distant future in our past. Not only the middle ages but spanning human history. We have already lived, and more importantly survived; through times as hard as the ones we are self imposing now." The title "CHIME HOURS" is taken from English folklore, which believed that those born at certain hours could see ghosts.
Layered with abstract noises, analogue electronica and snatches of fragile melody, "CHIME HOURS" evokes darkened alleyways and ethereal worlds, making for a deeply immersive album that’s testament to a distinctively inventive artist.