Physique is Neil Quigley (Kilkenny, IRL) and Sam Scranton (Chicago, IL). Together they make music by any and all means. Truly, no sound or technique is off limits as they assemble compositions that combine rich, warm sonic atmospheres with musical objects of objectively bad taste. Curve Totem, for release on 4/2/2021, is their debut album as a duo.
Their magpie approach to composition builds novel musical landscapes from homemade instruments, Text-To-Speech and AI voices, lap steel guitar, Ableton presets, found object percussion, field recording, the sounds of General MIDI, Light Resistor Boxes AND MORE. At times organic and earnest, and at other turns shiny, digital and distanced, their music often begins with improvisation that Quigley and Scranton revise and restructure over time. The sound world is eclectic, but the music retains a core aesthetic focus that runs throughout. The results are densely layered, maximal, percussive, crisp experimental music with a sense of levity and pure pleasure.
The Rock and Garfinkle features an AI voice trained on Quigley and Scranton’s speech, becoming an uncanny fusion of their vocal ticks and quirks. Greetings combines an ominous drone with friendly, welcoming gestures. Retrieval System brings together woozy lap steel with digital birds. There’s a lot going on on this album. In fact, we checked and you can’t put any more sounds on an album. It’s brimming.
Quigley has released material with Moot Tapes (Irl) and Fairpoint Recordings (Irl) and has also self released his music. Scranton is percussionist/composer/musician and has released music on Parlour Tapes+ (US) and Homeroom Chicago (US), Shinkoyo Artists Pool (US) as part of the duo Beautifulish, and on The Leaf Label (UK) with the band volcano!.
Performed by Neil Quigley and Sam Scranton.
Performed and recorded by Neil Quigley and Sam Scranton.
The initial recording took place in an Evanston basement on April 19, 2019. Subsequent edits and recordings in Chicago, Sirius Arts Centre, Cobh, Cork, Kilkenny Social Welfare Office, Neil's leaky shed in Kilkenny.
Album lettering by Molly Roth Scranton.