"Return to the sphinx through the waves of illusion
Follow the wanderer crossing the gate
Shades are calling for a dance of diffusion
Travel the world that the watcher creates”

So reads the text on the inner sleeve of Jacco Gardener’s latest, and third, LP. It’s an analogy that extends from a Nietzsche quote: “There are various eyes. Even the Sphinx has eyes: and as a result there are various truths, and as a result there is no truth.”

The quote, one wrapped in mystery and duality and a sense of change and exploration, is emblematic of where Jacco has been in the last couple of years. Holed up in Lisbon with a new love in his life, immersed in literature, cinema, philosophy and the winding streets of a new city to wander. “I think moving to Lisbon played a huge part of the album, as the city has a very mystical quality to it,” he says. “Especially in the older parts of the city, but also because of the hills it’s built on, wandering through the streets can feel almost like wandering through nature.”

The resulting album is not necessarily one that is representative of his new found surroundings in an obvious sense but more a depiction and projection of his thoughts and dreams whilst spent walking the streets; which he did whilst thinking about the books he’d been reading and imagining those world's put to sound. Jacco has been known to create swirling psychedelic pop boosted by his rich, resonate and baroque voice but on Somnium, his vocals are gone and in their place is an equally seamless melodic exploration but an instrumental one with a synthesised Sci-Fi edge.

Jacco Gardner’s Somnium / Great Silkie

22 May 2019

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