Last year was slow for me in the music discovery department. It was an atypical year in many ways so I didn’t end up putting as much time into seeking out new music as I usually do. I found myself gravitating to a lot of ambient music last year, or quieter music at least . Among my favorites in this department was a beautiful record of solo jazz guitar by Jeff Parker called Slight Freedom. While most people know Jeff’s work with the band Tortoise, he has a few releases under his own name and with others but this is his first truly solo record as far as I know.
While the album is only four tracks long, totaling about 37 minutes of music, the album as a whole holds a warmth and weight that I can’t get enough of. The music is immediate and elemental and was recorded in real-time with a minimal set of tools at hand without overdubs, an approach that allowed for an intimate listening experience that I really admire. It gave the album a sense of timelessness and still today after treating myself to a vinyl copy I have been putting it on quite a bit lately.
If you listened to 50ft Radio Vol. 15, then you heard one of the cuts off this album because I started off the mix with the track Super Rich Kids which is Jeff’s loose take on a Frank Ocean song (though you wouldn’t know it after listening). I love his subtle use of field recordings and audio loops which pull everything together to create a gentle landscape of sound.
If your looking for a peaceful album to give your day a few moments of calm you really can’t go wrong with Jeff Parker’s Slight Freedom. Digitally it is available for sale on iTunes and worth every penny. If you would like a vinyl copy, which is a beautiful sounding pressing on heavyweight vinyl, and read more about the release you can do that here on the label page for the release.