Damon Albarn - The Nearer The Mountain, More Pure The Stream Flows
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The Nearer The Fountain, More Pure The Stream Flows was originally intended as an orchestral piece inspired by the landscapes of Iceland. This last year has seen Damon Albarn return to music in lockdown and develop the work to 11 tracks which further explore themes of fragility, loss, emergence and rebirth. The result is a panoramic collection of songs with Albarn as storyteller. The album title is taken from a John Clare poem "Love and Memory". Albarn says "I have been on my own dark journey while making this record and it led me to believe that a pure source might still exist".
In a career of perpetual musical shifts and exploration, the record uncovers yet more ground, finding expansive orchestral arrangements nestling with intimate melodies, discordance brushing up against infectious majesty, all set to some of Albarn's most arresting vocal performances to date. Much like the beauty and chaos of the natural world it soundtracks, The Nearer The Fountain, More Pure The Stream Flows vividly documents the emotional ebb and flow of the human condition, in all its extremes, serving as a soul enriching document for our times.