Separation of Being
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Free-thinking Nova Scotia composer, musician and visual artist Jay Crocker (aka JOYFULTALK) channels Minimalism, Japanese environmental music, Maghrebian rhythmic modes and other numinous folkways to create his most focused, vibrant work to date. Based on a monumental, kaleidoscopic graphic score, A Separation Of Being is translated from two-dimensional page to trans-dimensional aural life using an array of homemade instruments, crowned with a majestic string arrangement written by Crocker and performed by Polaris and Juno winner Jesse Zubot (Tanya Tagaq, Destroyer). Visual scores often provoke ideas of openness, interpretation, improv and fluidity. JOYFULTALK's third album, and second for Constellation, is an altogether different beast. This three-part suite is airtight; interlocking arcs of polyrhythmic deep groove and new minimalism roll out in spellbinding propulsion, the music gathering it's warmth from the strings and it's peculiarities from Crocker's bespoke instrumentation and analog clockworks. The separation of being here is not division or rupture, but buoyant freedom through conduction of circulatory energies, marked by flowing melodic rondos of gyrating strings and sonic pointillism. A Separation Of Being is a systems music feast for the heart and mind. And lest we forget the eyes: Crocker began developing 'The Planetary Music System', his particular methodology for visualized composition, in 2012. The score for A Separation Of Being is the pinnacle of his system to date. Impressive in scale and scope, this stunning 5'x10' mural (acquired by Nova Scotia's provincial Art Bank in 2019) features geometric multi-directional cycles of brightly-coloured, finely-detailed sound notation. Album packaging on CD and audiophile 180g LP features details on the outer jacket cover art, and a reproduction of the full score on the inside gatefold, and as an exquisite 12" x 24"pull-out art print, respectively. Both the intricate graphic score and the superterrestrial music distinguish and elevate Crocker as a composer/producer/performer who's been integrating sonic, artistic and sculptural practices into unique installation, environmental and recorded works for the past 15 years. A Separation Of Being is the sound of one of Canada's most compelling and iconoclastic contemporary musical minds sublimated into a career-defining record of mesmeric coherence and clarity. Thanks for listening.