**OUT NOW** IDMf043 RFJ - of Storybook and Sound
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Old 26-01-2014, 01:59 AM   #1
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Icon6 **OUT NOW** IDMf043 RFJ - of Storybook and Sound

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The IDMf netlabel proudly presents Of Storybook and Sound by RFJ, a five track EP that cleverly mixes minimalism and IDM with glitchy breakbeat rhythms and layers of darkness and mystery that seem to have characters all their own.
A girl’s voice can be heard in the opening track, her words echoing as she sees a light and exclaims “maybe they can help us”. The listener is cleverly kept at bay from the origin of such a story and is instead pushed by the music to create their own imagery and their own story. The girl, sometimes nearby, sometimes far away, continues to narrate throughout. Her voice cuts up, repeats and turns into mountainous echoes that continue to build over rolling glitchy drums and synths that crunch and glide.
Of Storybook and Sound can be both creepy and comforting at the same time, both homely and exotic, and with a strong sense of dynamic it stops and starts to make you listen. At points it makes you wonder what you’re really hearing, it makes you wonder what’s happening, but it doesn’t leave you frustrated like a cryptic puzzle or an unsolved mystery. of Storybook and Sound inflames the imagination and paints so many different pictures all at once.
In a "A Version Of Me", RFJ takes us on a trip that is just as personal and as thought provoking as this release. Talking us through his own personal journey into darkness and back into light culminating in these tracks as an aural archive of that journey.


*Bonus PDF "RFJ - A Version Of Me" with full album

Credits

released 26 January 2014
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Vocals on tracks 1-4 CDJ
Vocals on track 5 CDJ / IFJ
All tracks written and produced by RFJ
Mastering: Ben "Benwaa" Walthew
Art/layout: Scyn

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Old 26-01-2014, 02:03 AM   #2
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Re: **OUT NOW** IDMf043 RFJ - of Storybook and Sound

LOVE the layout, looks fantastic! Off to listen!

Edit: the link is wrong on the bandcamp page- takes you to silent strangers.
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Old 26-01-2014, 02:05 AM   #3
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Re: **OUT NOW** IDMf043 RFJ - of Storybook and Sound

YESSSSSSSSS! I've been so excited for this. Congrats, brother, and excellent work to Ben et al for another release
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Old 26-01-2014, 02:18 AM   #4
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Re: **OUT NOW** IDMf043 RFJ - of Storybook and Sound

Downloading... Congrats on the release RFJ! And I have really enjoyed the posts you have been posting up until the release, really made it meaningful for me.
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Old 26-01-2014, 02:20 AM   #5
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Re: **OUT NOW** IDMf043 RFJ - of Storybook and Sound

Much excite!

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Old 26-01-2014, 02:27 AM   #6
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Re: **OUT NOW** IDMf043 RFJ - of Storybook and Sound

sweet downloading!

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Old 26-01-2014, 02:29 AM   #7
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Re: **OUT NOW** IDMf043 RFJ - of Storybook and Sound

Woah...uh I'm confused.

I"M LISTENING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 26-01-2014, 02:39 AM   #8
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Re: **OUT NOW** IDMf043 RFJ - of Storybook and Sound

Beautiful album and beautiful story. Purchased and listening. Congrats RFJ, Ben, all involved.

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Old 26-01-2014, 02:44 AM   #9
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Re: **OUT NOW** IDMf043 RFJ - of Storybook and Sound

Morning- so beautiful. Serious chills....just finished listening. Great album. I'll have it on repeat tonight!
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Old 26-01-2014, 03:22 AM   #10
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Re: **OUT NOW** IDMf043 RFJ - of Storybook and Sound

Any words of thanks I could muster would fail entirely. Massive amounts of thanks are due to benwaa for getting this out there for me in this way. Many thanks to you guys, the listeners, for not only checking this out but being my friends.

For those that do not know the vocalist / narrarator throughout the work is the voice of my seven year old daughter Charlotte. My son, isaac, makes a brief appearance on track five as well.

I consider it both a privledge and an honor to be apart of this wonderful community of artists and friends.

I'm on the way home going through the desert but ill see you guys tomorrow.


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Old 26-01-2014, 05:43 AM   #11
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Re: **OUT NOW** IDMf043 RFJ - of Storybook and Sound

just finished listening to the EP, and what a wonderful one it is!

loving the beautiful - and sometimes mysterious - atmosphere throughout the tracks, while the echoing voices and the glitching drums seem to "play" with each other, giving this EP a distinct (and really nice) sound.

congrats for the amazing work, man!

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Old 26-01-2014, 09:47 AM   #12
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Re: **OUT NOW** IDMf043 RFJ - of Storybook and Sound

I am totally going to do a track-by-track review. This is going to be awesome.

Congrats on a new release, man . I know it'll be great~

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Old 26-01-2014, 12:20 PM   #13
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Re: **OUT NOW** IDMf043 RFJ - of Storybook and Sound

Great album...Great cover...Great sound...The drums stood out as one of the highlights.

Awe...and some

Cheers

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Old 26-01-2014, 12:42 PM   #14
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Re: **OUT NOW** IDMf043 RFJ - of Storybook and Sound


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Old 26-01-2014, 10:27 PM   #15
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Re: **OUT NOW** IDMf043 RFJ - of Storybook and Sound

thanks for upload....will give it a listen
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Old 26-01-2014, 10:49 PM   #16
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Re: **OUT NOW** IDMf043 RFJ - of Storybook and Sound

Bought and D/L'd. Can't lie, I've been looking forward to this. I'll give you a little review at some point. Congrats @[Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]
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Old 26-01-2014, 10:52 PM   #17
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Old 27-01-2014, 02:42 AM   #18
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Re: **OUT NOW** IDMf043 RFJ - of Storybook and Sound

Congrats! Much looking forward to hearing this. First track in the background already very intriguing!

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Old 27-01-2014, 03:24 AM   #19
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Re: **OUT NOW** IDMf043 RFJ - of Storybook and Sound

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Congrats! Much looking forward to hearing this. First track in the background already very intriguing!
Hey thanks man.

You mention track 1, here's a tid bit...

Except for the drone bass thing and my daughters words, all the sounds you hear come from track 4. There's like four of em in there but you can't tell because they've been stretched, resampled a few times, cut, faded in / out to mimic attack and decay, then resequenced into what you hear.

I much prefer making sounds in this way as opposed to trying to make a crazy synth patch via straight up synth programming. In fact most of the sounds in every track are born from one another usually starting with a very basic synth patch.

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Old 27-01-2014, 05:35 AM   #20
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Re: **OUT NOW** IDMf043 RFJ - of Storybook and Sound

Alright, here's a full track-by-track review. It's crazy, but when you've got an album as heartfelt, as intimate, as honest as this one...there's no way you can pass up the emotions. And I think this is the best way for me to let those emotions go, so bear with this, hehe.

btw yes i am trained to write full formal critiques bwahhaha maybe i can start something here. anyway.

~

RFJ - Of Storybook and Sound (IDMf043)
Track-by-Track Review

Introduction:

It takes a lot of willpower to be honest. To carve your emotions into music without holding back. It's ironic, because the "storybook" portrays artist RFJ as some serial liar - he admits it so openly in there that it's scary. But in contrast, when you take a listen to these tracks, you hear sheer honesty. It's that feeling of genuine honesty that makes this album so intimate - so close to heart.

If you haven't read the "storybook" yet, you'll definitely still be able to appreciate the "sound". But the fact is that in reading artist RFJ's heart-wrenching story, bearing - spoiler alert - no clear resolution, you'll see how these powerful tracks are a mirror of the artist's emotions. Needless to say, it's - excuse me - fucking amazing.

~

The album begins with White Flags, which opens with a surreal filtered choir, juxtaposed with a de-tuned drone in the lower register. Out of nowhere, a girl's voice is heard - "Maybe they can help us". The atmosphere created is, ironically, not of surrender, but that of suspense. Simple suspense - as if there's no resolution, and there's going to be no resolution.

The drums enter, masterfully paralleled to the atmosphere; I think it's necessary to state somewhere that one of the highlights in this album is the masterful use of drums.

From the beginning of the album, artist RFJ carves out a soundscape that cannot be described using the "genres" which we define music by. It comes across as "ambient", it comes across as "breaks", but in the end, you have no idea what the hell is going on, because face it - when you have an album that involves such beautiful intimacy, there's no way it's going to be normal.

Contemplation begins on a much darker note, white noise sweeps dominating over the dark pads. The girl's voice returns - you hear her saying something, but it's unclear (or maybe I'm just asian). The drums enter, once again, masterfully. The atmosphere created in this is dark, almost hateful. Resonant pads punctuate the atmosphere, creating a sense of looming - as if something's brewing inside. If you interpret into the title a bit, it could be a representation of dark, destructive thoughts. And it's so beautifully portrayed that it's scary.

The Last Analysis opens up with delayed synth comps, skilfully blended with drums. This progresses into a section bearing much more tension, and once again, the foreboding returns, as the girl's voice is heard again - "magic". There's a tiny period of rest as the beat breaks, to the command of the girl. The breakdown is followed quickly be her voice again - "Dad, can I stay home?", and the beat enters, distorting the voice, creating a beautifully haunting atmosphere. "Last" bears an atmosphere more haunting than any other track in this album. And that's sweet.

A Narrow Escape is clearly the highlight of this album - detuned piano juxtaposed skilfully with fragments of the girl's voice; fragments of drum beats. The drum fragments start to come together, and it eventually culminates into a summation of everything - echoes of the girl's voice (with beautiful stereo delay by the way), the calls of the dark pads, and a beat that is nothing short of surreal. The track ends abruptly, but executed so well that it's effective.

"Disturbing" is the best word for this. It's a track that you can never rest your finger on. It's not that type of track that comes back to haunt you at night, but it's definitely the type of track that you would look back on and feel that sense of unresolved conflict.

The album concludes with Morning, title connoting a resolution of some sort - something that we have seeked since the start of this album. Stereo delayed acoustic guitars kick start the track, backed by a mild drum beat - it sets a contrast with the rest of the album. The girl's voice is heard again, but more significantly, the laughter of someone is heard, punctuating the tranquility of this. Dark, un-modulating pads attempt to add to the tranquility, but ultimately find themselves creating that familiar haunting atmosphere, as if there are still shadows in the morning.

And thus, the album concludes unresolved. Beautifully unresolved.

~

The Verdict:

If you haven't downloaded this album already, you need to be stoned to life. Because an album of such honest, of such genuine sincerity, takes you on a sixteen-and-a-half minute journey to the honest realities of life. I'm not the guy to put scores on albums, but this album doesn't deserve a score - it falls into a category so unexplored by modern music that it's impossible to judge it the same way.

In conclusion, when you do listen to this album, keep your heart open. Let the emotions which artist RFJ is trying to paint sit in you.

And read the story. It's pretty cool.

Stay sexy!
~dajwxp

Last edited by dajwxp; 27-01-2014 at 07:51 AM..

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