With his fifth album on n5MD, Northumberland native Graham Richardson’s Last Days project revisits the theme of his first release on the label over 10 years ago – the sea. Whereas his debut record was more of a personal reflection, Seafaring casts a wider net as it paints a variety of portraits & vignettes of maritime life both modern and historical.
“Drawing inspiration from shipping routes, to Ernest Shackleton and his crew’s ill-fated voyage on the Endurance, to families being disjointed and reunited, Seafaring goes some way to hint at what the oceans present to us.” – n5MD
The broader scope and outward focus does not come at the expense of Richardson’s restrained approach to combining acoustic and electronic sources to create warmly inviting soundscapes that are as intimate as they are cinematic. Some pieces are direct historical references Shackleton’s adventures (“Endurance”, “Weddell Sea”, “James Caird”) while others place the listener in melancholic seaside settings such as the beautiful tracks that bookend the album (“Towards the Horizon”, “Where the Sky Rests”) or the reverie-like “Fading Shore” and “Tiny Flares”. Imagine sitting by a crackling fire reading tales of the sea with the sound of the surf pounding the shore at a safe distance and the sharp scent of ocean brine carried on the breeze and you get an idea of the places to which this music can transport you.
Seafaring will be the first Last Days album pressed on vinyl and will be available in white or clear editions as well as a digipak CD on May 19th. Selected for the cover image is A Quiet Seascape, 1883 by American landscape artist William Trost Richards