Daniel Davies - Signals - CD
Whether scoring a film or making a solo album, Daniel Davies thinks cinematically. Images and story - on a movie screen, on a canvas, or flashing through his mind - inform the shape of his compositions and the sounds he uses to bring them to life.
For "Signals", his first solo record for Sacred Bones, the inspiration for his musical narration was a collaboration with visual artist Jesse Draxler, whose otherworldly mixed media works grace the cover and the booklet. Using Draxler's images as his jumping off point, Davies created eight richly textured compositions that created a soundtrack for the unsettling world of the artwork.
As the songs move through the landscape, Davies calls on whatever instrumentation he needs to serve their journey. He utilizes the warbling synths and slicing guitar that have characterized his soundtrack work, but he's also preternaturally at ease when he busts out a harpsichord and a vocal synth on lead single "Phantom Waltz."
On "Destructive Field," he leaves space for his Halloween collaborator John Carpenter to lay down his signature sound. With the exception of that passage, all the music on the record is recorded by Davies himself. "Signals " is an album with a lot to discover, and repeat listens will reveal an inviting - if a bit unnerving - world that you'll want to spend all day in.