Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Directions to the Stars...

Maps - So Low So High (Demo)

Maps - Lost My Soul (Demo)

Last year Maps made my single of the year, the double A-side 10” ‘Start Something / To the Sky’. This year he may well have done it again with the release of another double A-side 10”, ‘Lost My Soul / Sparks in the Snow’ on Last Space Recordings back in March.

Maps is James Chapman, a Northampton-based artist with a 16-track making music in his bedroom that sounds like it was crafted in the upper echelons of heaven. He’s been compared to My Bloody Valentine and Spiritualized, which I guess is a nod to the sonic vastness of the celestial psychedelia he’s creating. Forget shoegazing, Maps is stargazing. This is subtle, ethereal dreampop that makes your heart soar and flip and causes the hairs on the back of your neck to stand on end. Vocally, it’s a narcoleptic lullaby, a last caress before you slip away. It really doesn’t get much better than this.

I’ve posted a couple of demo tracks obtained from a secret site accessed with a password from the free CD that came with the recent single. It gives you a taste of what to expect, but it’s definitely worth trying to pick up the 10s to sample the full-fat Maps experience. James has spent time in Iceland working with Valgeir Sigurdsson (Björk, Múm) on the debut album, which I am seriously excited about. You should be too.

Buy - Maps from Norman Records
Visit - Maps at his website
More tracks - @ My Space
Interview and music clips at - BBCi Northamptonshire


No comments: