Jon Durant and Peter Chilvers: Always Golden Sands and Vista

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JON DURANT & PETER CHILVERS: ALWAYS GOLDEN SANDS & VISTA
This episode of Big Blend Radio features English keyboardist Peter Chilvers and American guitarist Jon Durant. Hear about their collaboration to create and release “Always Golden Sands” and “Vista,” an ambient jazz album in two parts that features a series of stunningly beautiful aural vistas, which blend ECM inspired chamber jazz improvisation with ambient music. Listen to their interview hear in the YouTube player or download the podcast on Podbean or SoundCloud.

English keyboardist and Brian Eno collaborator Peter Chilvers teamed up with American guitarist Jon Durant to create a series of stunningly beautiful aural vistas, which blend ECM inspired chamber jazz improvisation with ambient music. For both artists, this recording was an opportunity to explore their introspective sides as well as their textural tendencies. Gentle melodies weave their way through atmospheric clouds, at times reminiscent of Budd and Eno, but with a sense of interplay between the guitar and keys those ambient pioneers left out.

The duo settled into a rhythm of working across distant time zones during the pandemic. Tracks often began with a morning keyboard improvisation from Chilvers, which would be embellished and transformed by Durant as daylight hit his side of the Atlantic. Having completed Vista, the momentum built up, and three further tracks emerged. These stood well on their own and will be released first as “Always Golden Sand” – a starter to Vista’s main course.

The EP features the exquisitely melancholic “Always Autumn”, the playful dialog of guitar and percolating synths on “Shifting Sands”, and the pensive “Golden”, a reworking of the more rhythmic “Age of Steam” from Vista. The album also includes the darker shades of “Embers” and the expansive “Sunset” – multiple piano loops slowly build around each other, augmented by Durant’s signature cloud guitars before giving way to a deep dusky atmosphere to close the album. Best enjoyed with a glass of whisky.

Chilvers commented, “As a teenager, I fell in love with the great ECM recordings of the 70s and 80s. Working with Jon has felt like travelling back to that period and finding an undiscovered star. It’s been a joyful and effortless recording, a live album somehow recorded despite lockdowns on opposite sides of the Atlantic. I wish I could beam it back to my teenage self.”

Durant noted, “My favorite aspect of this record is the level of interplay we managed to achieve, especially given the difficult circumstances in which we made this record. Peter’s lovely piano melodies were an inspiration for me to add not just beautiful textures but also play melodically with and around his piano and synths.”

https://www.jondurant.rocks  and http://www.peterchilvers.com  

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