Free Digi-LP From The Caretaker – ‘Extra Patience (After Seabald)’

Can’t believe we’re late on this one, being fan boy obsessed with the work of The Caretaker as we are. James Kirby’s solo project under this name is a constant source of fascination, and a meeting point on the musical landscape for left-field record heads.

Kirby’s artistic output is mostly recognised through the V/vm moniker, edits and covers of pop songs done with a basis in noise, beaten with slowed-down distortion murked over beyond recognition. If it sounds basic in writing, believe that it’s not in practice. V/vm works are a stroke of genius we’ve been spoiled for choice with, especially in 2006 with the V/vm 365 project – a release a day for a year. The live shows quickly gained a reputation for having their own agenda of chaos and theatrics, with Kirby dressing up and miming the music, dancing around, creating an oft-destructive and intense atmosphere. As with most collectors and music fanatics we also want what we’re not allowed, and the below video is an unaired commercial that was sound tracked by the V/vm cover of Forever Young, never released to the best of my knowledge and a source of obsession for fans since.

The Caretaker project launched started in 1999, reaching top-level endorsement as a favourite to the late and great John Peel. The music is often composed from old and forgotten 78s, the sparser areas and used as individual pieces of an instrument, played beautifully in to complete immersion of worn down loops and journeys. The music often makes you feel uncomfortable in the process of enjoying it, and although designed to create a mood and atmosphere, it’s not something you can ever listen to as background. It’s an entirely complete transformation of a situation, and in my experience music doesn’t come anymore emotional than The Caretaker.

Things got next level when Kirby started examining memory functions, specifically Alzheimer’s disease and amnesia and their relation to music. The resulting albums were given little press push but received to critical acclaim in concept, composition and the end listening results. Anyone who could hear it was moved by it. Earlier this year The Caretaker delivered a a full LP done as the soundscape for a documentary on a book by W.G. Seabald. Patience (After Sebald) was released on his own newly created imprint, History Always Favors The Winners, and, a constant relisten. The grooves have practically run down on the wax, it really is the concentration music we referenced earlier, perfect focus when you’re listening to it with the ability to take your mind away totally. To be honest I’ve still not seen the movie of the same name that it sound tracked, but actually don’t feel I have to.

I was unaware until a few days ago that there was a digital follow-up, almost a b-sides, outtakes and self-remix type of thing titled as Extra Patience (After Sebald) which you can stream or download below. It’s a wicked album, ether as an accompaniment to the original LP or stand-alone. There’s also the trailer for the original movie that comes bundled with the download as an mp4, also worth checking.

Available for free for a limited time. Extra tracks taken from the soundtrack of the Grant Gee film “Patience (After Sebald). The source material for ‘Patience’ was sourced from Franz Schubert’s 1827 piece ‘Winterreise’ and subjected to his perplexing processes, smudging and rubbing isolated fragments into a dust-caked haze of plangent keys, strangely resolved loops and de-pitched vocals which recede from view as eerily as they appear.