‘The Bittereinders’ is out now on Brainfeeder
Legit pioneer, standard bearer for experimental electronics, and newly minted faculty at Berklee College of Music, Daedelus (aka Alfred Darlington) returns on Brainfeeder with a new album titled “The Bittereinders” sounding of ancient requiem with evocations of Township Jazz, but still modern electronic music by way of drone, pipe organ wheezing and incessant beats.
“The Bittereinders” brings Daedelus’ “End of Empire” trilogy on Brainfeeder to a close, following 2010’s “Righteous Fists of Harmony” inspired by The Boxer Rebellion (1899-1901) and 2014’s “The Light Brigade” that recalled the Crimean War of 1853-56. The culmination of the series, “The Bittereinders” dives into the final 3 year conflict from the Victorian era that was perhaps its most brutal. The Second Boer War is recounted as fought between the British and formerly Dutch Z.A.R. and Free Orange People and ended by treaty in 1902. What is not made clear in the ‘counting is the thousands of Black and Brown people were caught in the colonial crossfire of Empire’s endless appetite. This is the conflict that coined modern use of the term “concentration camp” and brought new bloody levels of guerrilla warfare. Just as in “Righteous Fists of Harmony” and “The Light Brigade”, Daedelus has taken liberty in using modern sound sources against a backdrop of mystic overtones.
“From the belief that contemporary events are too difficult to address,” Alfred explains. “I’ve reached back into history to relate some of what is largely forgotten to directly look into the ravages which continue to echo. All records fuse unrelenting repetition of lyric and forms, evocative noise and reaching melodies.”
Recorded at Brainfeeder label mate Jameszoo’s Willem Twee Studios in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, Netherlands – an exceptional analogue electronic sound and music workspace – and Red Bull Studios in Cape Town, South Africa. “The Bittereinders” features Lee Thomson (trumpet on ‘The Irreconcilables’, in a nod to the Township Jazz tradition); Mikhaela Faye Kruger (vocals on ‘Sold As’ and ‘Veldt’); Shane Cooper (bass on ‘Du Sud’ with American Amir Yaghmai providing ghost vocals as a connection to the previous LPs).
A limited edition 3LP box set housing the “End of Empire” trilogy will be released on 15 November 2019 and is available to preorder now.