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Sleep Dreamt A Brother

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product details

  • Audio CD (7 Oct. 2013)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Fire Records
  • ASIN: B00EU8RB82
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 517,796 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Product Description

Sleep Dreamt a Brother is the new album from musician and artist Mathew Sawyer, due for release on Fire Records in October. Mournful, lush arrangements that sound almost medieval at times with stark strings, classical guitar and piano overlaid by Sawyer's bare, distinctive vocals and creepy foley sound effects. The record is a place. Not the representation of a place, but something inhabitable. With a clearer vision than his other records, the album is very notably about death. Sawyer wrote and recorded the majority of the album following the loss of three friends a few months apart in 2011 and completed it two weeks before his son was born. As Mathew explains: "When I talk about death or loss I want it to be the feeling itself, not just a representation of that feeling." Mathew Sawyer is a renowned painter and artist and has a Masters from The Royal College of Art. He has exhibited all over the world (he was The Guardian's artist of the Week and his exhibition at the Rokeby Gallery was previewed in Time Out). He created a painting as cover art for Sleep Dreamt a Brother, which features a man raising his arms with death mirroring this action. They're a reflection of each other. They're brothers. In Greek mythology, Hypnos and Thanatos are brothers. They are Sleep and Death. The title Sleep Dreamt A Brother imagines Sleep dreaming his brother into being. The record views life and death as just a memory or a dream of the other, and tries to reconcile the gap between them. It considers the dream world to be just as valid an experience as the waking world, and that death is like a dream we'll have. Mathew says; "When I die, I'd like to die in the night time as dreaming in sleep is not of this world anyway. Lost in a dream is nothing to be afraid of." The album was recorded and produced by Sawyer at his home. "I like recording to be hand in hand with everyday living. The sound of cars come through the windows, the phone rings, floorboards creak. These sounds all played an important role in making this record. Studios are quiet and lifeless." Although this record is under his own name, previously he has gone by the name of Mathew Sawyer and The Ghosts, and before that just The Ghosts. He has released two albums, Blue Birds Blood in 2006 on Catbird Records (USA) then 2007 on Stolen Recordings (UK), and How Snakes Eat 2010 (Fire). Although Sleep Dreamt A Brother is very much a solo album, live he is joined by a band consisting of Vasso Ana on piano and various other instruments, Alison Cotton from The Left Outsides on viola, Theo Hall from Le Volume Courbe on bass and Steve Dore from Freakapuss on drums. "In Mathew Sawyer's world, love is important, but seems less important than the circumstances and details of itself. Just because Mathew Sawyer's voice is odd, doesn't mean he'll fall back lazy on sung melodies. Originality squared is something infinite. Mathew Sawyer says and does things that feel right at the time."Quietus // "Anyone with sense will invest in this genuinely beautiful, fragile and intelligent album" Stool Pigeon (4/5) // "Sawyer's sweetly faltering voice and darkly surreal lyrics complete the intriguing, pathos-drenched picture" Uncut (4/5) //

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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This album is a stunner. Mathew Sawyer is a singular talent: one of those fellows who lurks in the margins creating great work, one to cherish.

His last album How Snakes Eat was a highly original collection of anti-folk ruminations on life. This beautifully recorded album, though, raises the bar. It takes the game to a whole new level. Mathew has a tremendous string section to enhance the pieces and his arrangements are always surprising and witty. Sometimes they are scary too, but you might expect that from a man who fronts a band of Ghosts!

Feeeeling is a truly great song 'That drawn-out feeling' is something we can all relate to, I think, and the sentiment is especially apt from someone like Mathew Sawyer who happens to be a highly respected visual artist in his day job. Perhaps a drawn-out feeling is a description of 'painter's block'(?)

Death is like a Dream We'll Have is another very moving piece. The emotion floods through this song and the voice - so human and so searching - seems at once brave and defiant in the face of mortality.

Sleep Dreamt a Brother is an album cut free of commercial considerations and all the better for that. It is simply brimming with magic and loss. It is truly human music and I think it is also a fine piece of Art (in the very best sense of that much-abused word).

I urge you to hear this record and allow the songs into your soul. They will linger there for sure . . . They will haunt you.
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