Midnight Watchman, otherwise known as Andy Jones, is a composer and producer who crafts unique and complex soundscapes that form the perfectly energetic yet simultaneously calming ambient backdrop to see you through modern life. Beginning with Double Up, the music has the feeling of being all at once manic and dreamlike. There’s an unmistakably fast pace to the piano part and even the beat, but it’s a subtle element in an otherwise delicate arena, and for this to have such an enjoyable effect on you is fascinating and incredibly impressive.
Moving on through the collection, the music has a distinctly organic sound that often steers you away from thoughts of electronic instrumentation or samples. Suburban Bliss creates a mood that suits the concept implied by the title brilliantly, there’s a joy and lightness to it, though not without a hint of some distant difficulty. The structural shift at the half way point suggests this further, bringing about a feeling of realness among an otherwise blissful and carefree environment. Chaos From The Cold follows on powerfully.
Andy Jones’ musical background begins quite some time ago during his days as a street performer. To consider this, the various surroundings you can find yourself in the centre of as you move around, the music and indeed many of the titles on this project encapsulate a defiant willingness to create calm among chaos, or even beauty from madness. The idea of a liquid universe fits gorgeously with how smooth and free-flowing the collection is as a complete piece of artistry. In among it though, there are so many different stories and emotions.
A guitarist and keyboard player who began as a street musician in UK before touring the US and then returning home, Andy Jones AKA Midnight Watchman, is a composer and producer of ambient music. Influenced by an extremely wide spectrum of music and musicians, that go from Vangelis to Chopin, ad Ryan Adams to Tycho, Midnight Watchman has released his 12 track instrumental album, entitled “Liquid Universe”. In the hands of a lesser artist, the varying song structures of this album would likely become tiresome, but every one of the album’s twelve tracks is a testament to the Midnight Watchman’s breathtaking compositional skills. The producer builds much of the record around a theme of melodies and rhythms which start off simply, to which he adds layer upon layer of complexity as they progress.
The album as a whole is itself a blend of structures and forms of arrangement that shift from track to track. But, like all great songwriters, Midnight Watchman knows how to surprise the listener. The album really eases you in with songs like “Double Up” and “Suburban Bliss”, which both sound like a prototypical tunes; supremely chilled but with enough layers to make them feel like much more than just background music.
Listening to tracks like “The Lichfield Hour” and Bering East is the aural equivalent of exploring an art museum. The overall effect is one of remarkable beauty where you have the option of how you take it all in. Just take a take a careful listen to sounds that strike you, then listen closer and closer until new colors, patterns, and themes emerge.
Midnight Watchman weaves wonderfully soothing worlds on the quietly optimistic “Liquid Universe”. Tastefully executed the songs have a timeless feeling to them while they unfurl with incredible grace.
Everything simply works from the light yet effective rhythms to the true heart, the soulful spirited melodies that adorn every moment. Opting for just the right balance between pop and experimentation, electronica and ambiance, the pieces simply wash over with an incredible focus on detail.
Stylistically Midnight Watchman incorporates some rather unusual elements into the mix, at times bringing classical structures alongside a shoegaze-like fervor.
“Double Up” opens the album with such grace, setting the mood. Layers interact creating almost a folksy fervor. With a late-night vibe to it “Chaos From The Cold” has a mysterious aura to it. Pastoral in its insistence on slow evolution “The Lichfield Hour” opts for something reflective, allowing the melodies to grow in scope and strength.
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