Friday September 22nd, 8pm, Main Room
Far Caspian returns to The Workmans Club for their headline show on Friday 22nd September 2023. Tickets available 31st March at 10am from www.singularartists.ie
Far Caspian is the project of singer, multi-instrumentalist and producer Joel Johnston. Recording, playing and mixing everything himself across a catalogue of EPs and a debut record he has built upon this to become a fully self-contained and unique artist directing his own videos, shooting his press shots, creating his own artwork and starting a record label to do the same for other artists.
Starting as a Soundcloud project created to generate interest from other artists in his production work Far Caspian soon became a collaborative project with friends that took Joel from a basement studio setup to over 2M streams a month on his first EPs through UK indie label Dance to the Radio.
Deciding to work as a solo project in 2020 Joel moved back to his native Ireland, built a studio in a shed and recorded debut full length ‘Ways to Get Out’, a brooding and majestic reflection on navigating your mid-20s. The album has gone on to over 30m streams in the 18 months since its release in October 2021.
Having built a committed international following across social media and streaming services Far Caspian’s music has featured on BBC Radio 1, KEXP, BBC
6music and in online tastemakers such as Clash, Dork, The Line of Best Fit and a number of significant editorial and third party playlists across Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music and YouTube.
Live, close friends join Joel to turn the project into a full band, resulting in driven and upbeat performances. This exciting sound was reflected in sold-out shows on the band’s first record tours in London, Leeds, Manchester, Paris, Amsterdam and Berlin.
Following ‘Ways To Get Out’ – sophomore album ‘The Last Remaining Light’ isn’t a follow up record but more so a departure into a different feel to his previous material.
Joel’s influences for the new record lean heavily towards the late 90’s/2000’s alternative scene with references to Autolux’s doubled guitars and expressive drumming, Sparklehorse mixed with The Radio Dept. vocal style and ‘Eternal sunshine of a spotless mind’ styled electronic elements.
Written and recorded in another makeshift studio in the basement of his record label’s office building the album lyrics depicts Joel’s reflection on being thrust back into a post-covid world where everything clicks back into repetitive patterns from day-to-day and how trying to find purpose within the modern world feels like an isolating and pressurised process.
Rather than being introspective, the stories within the songs reflect the people he saw day after day on his way to the studio, and how he imagined and empathised about the same challenges for others occupied behind their daily patterns of rinse and repeat.
The result is a multi-layered record with moments of enlightened reflection in equal measure to inspection of the darker moments that ultimately come part and parcel with navigating life.
Joel on making the record:
“I started writing for album 2 the day after I handed in the mixes for ‘Ways To Get Out’. I felt exhausted from trying to piece together the first album but when it was done I was inspired to start the next thing and learn from my mistakes. I knew straight away that I wanted to write a 10 track – 40 minute album after making a long debut.
I moved into a derelict basement in the city centre and got inspired by the daily commute. Commuter repeating was written on the first day of moving in and the last remaining light followed the next day. I had forgotten to bring my headphone adapteron those first sessions so the drums on those songs were recorded without a click. You can hear them slow down and sped up throughout the first song. I think that works really well as it feels a bit hectic and unorganised. Very similar to my view of the city in the mornings.
This approach led me to keep the mindset of not chasing perfection. Instead, I decided to only record my parts once or twice and keep that initial hesitation. I moved out of the studio after recording was finished and moved my studio back into my loft for mixing. I bought a Tascam 244 4 track the year before to demo on but was gathering dust in the corner of the room so I thought I’d get it going again. Most of the elements in the tracks were printed to cassette and back into Logic. It was pretty cathartic to send a nice recording into the Tascam and destroy it with tape saturation.
Throughout the final part of recording and mixing I was listening to alot of The Microphones and Brian Eno. On every trip into the studio I’d listen to ‘Discreet Music’ by Brian Eno. And the experimental nature of Phil Elverum’s music encouraged me to be comfortable in the imperfections. I think with this album I’m starting to become comfortable with myself and my art and I’m looking forward to expanding on the next record.”
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