Sensitively curated from live recordings of improvised performances
around Ireland over a four year period, A slender song, is a compelling
listen. Woodwind instrumentalist and composer Seán Mac Erlaine’s second solo album is a place where haunting melodies are living, growing things, developing in sympathy with nuanced loops and fluttering particles of sound.
Released on limited edition, transparent orange vinyl, A slender song features a breathtaking collage by the Cork artist Craig Carry. Mac Erlaine considers this to be a sister album to his 2012 release, Long after the music is gone. Where the former was recorded entirely in a small room in County Leitrim, A slender song reflects a life on the road, taking in the flavours and aspects of Cork, Dingle, Dublin, Galway, Laois, Louth, Meath, Mitchelstown, Skibbereen, Sligo, Tralee and Wicklow.
Mac Erlaine’s distinctive combination of his instrumental sound with innovative live electronics runs through A slender song. “The electronic processes have been designed to respond to the instrument and its soundworld,” says Mac Erlaine. “I wanted the acoustic and electronic sounds to meld into one new soundworld.”
“In a sense, the music on A slender song is from playing with all the things I learnt from the first album.” Mac Erlaine continues. It’s the sound of a process.” For Mac Erlaine, it’s a process that keeps on giving.
Seán Mac Erlaine is a Dublin-based woodwind instrumentalist, composer and music producer, recognised as one of Ireland’s most forward-thinking creative musicians. Mac Erlaine works in a variety of settings from free improvisation, contemporary jazz, folk music and experimental theatre.
Within a busy performance schedule, Mac Erlaine works with a hugely diverse range of musicians and artists reflecting his own versatility and interest in cross-platform work. He has performed with leading musical figures and groups including Bill Frisell, David Toop, This is How we Fly, The Smith Quartet, Hayden Chisholm, Lisa Hannigan, Ronan Guilfoyle, Iarla Ó Lionáird, Damo Suzuki, Underground Resistance and The Gloaming.
Mac Erlaine plays alto and soprano saxophones as well as clarinet and bass clarinet, and holds a PhD and Master of Music Performance. Fascinated by performance and movement, he is also a qualified practicing teacher of Alexander Technique in Dublin.
“Mac Erlaine is consistently one of the most interesting and adventurous musicians of his generation.” — The Irish Times