Ghosts Of Then And Now
by Illum Sphere

— Released 10th February 2014

Ryan Hunn, AKA Illum Sphere, is founder of Manchester’s renowned club night Hoya:Hoya, has remixed Radiohead, toured the world’s best club nights and released music on some of its finest imprints – 3024, Tectonic, Young Turks, and now Ninja Tune, where he’s found a long term home.

His album arrives on the back of eager expectation. If anyone seemed set to make one of the standout albums of the era, it was Illum Sphere. The good news is that he’s delivered in spades. ...

Ryan Hunn, AKA Illum Sphere, is founder of Manchester’s renowned club night Hoya:Hoya, has remixed Radiohead, toured the world’s best club nights and released music on some of its finest imprints – 3024, Tectonic, Young Turks, and now Ninja Tune, where he’s found a long term home.

His album arrives on the back of eager expectation. If anyone seemed set to make one of the standout albums of the era, it was Illum Sphere. The good news is that he’s delivered in spades.

Ghosts Of Then And Now has been deliberately and uncompromisingly conceived as a full length record; an album in the traditional sense, full of music that couldn’t be more modern, whilst nodding to Hunn's various influences.

Opener "Liquesce" – which features the drumming of Shigeto – is aptly titled, conjuring as it does a sense of blissful dissolution. It also contains a haunting refrain that’s deceptively familiar, the sort of melody line you’ll hear for years. The song ends abruptly (and cleverly) in a deep intake of breath, as if preparing itself for the album ahead.

"At Night" shows not only how adept with vocals Illum Sphere is – layering Mai Nestor of Facit’s beautiful voice into his music in a startlingly effective fashion – but also just how far he pushes the template of his form. Elements of all the go-to genres’ glitch, bass and drum experimentation are present here, but Hunn has mastered them completely, using them only for genuine emotive effect.

"The Road" is the first of three fruitful collaborations with Shadowbox, AKA Bonnie Baxter. Driving drums with an industrial edge merge with anxious synths and looping, lilting melodies, the distinctive, rich vocal both seductive and foreboding.

"It’ll Be Over Soon" builds from an exploratory, ominous groove to a frenetic, restless release, in a study of mood that approaches the existential. "Lights Out / In Shinjuku’s" deep bass and elemental, sci-fi synths steer the album towards its transcendental ending in "Embryonic." This the final part of the three Shadowbox collaborations, see her return to glorious effect. A simple, shuffle-swing drum and haunting melody give way to abruptly to ocean-deep bass and vast, emotive melody.

Ghosts Of Then And Now is further proof that electronic music is taking giant leaps forward. This is a record so rich in ideas, themes, textures and writing that it will draw the listener in time and time again. As such, it will take its place alongside the best works in the form.

Ghosts Of Then And Now
by Illum Sphere

— Released 10th February 2014

Buy physical

2xLP (ZEN203)

2LP with 5mm Spine - Rough Board

£17.00
 
CD (BRC-405)

Japanese Edition CD

 
CD (ZENCD203)

CD Softpack - B&W Rough Board

£8.00
 

Buy digital

MP3 (ZENDNL203)
£5.00
 
16-bit WAV (ZENDNL203W)
£7.00
 

Buy physical

Buy digital

2xLP (ZEN203)

2LP with 5mm Spine - Rough Board

£17.00
MP3 (ZENDNL203)
£5.00
CD (BRC-405)

Japanese Edition CD

16-bit WAV (ZENDNL203W)
£7.00
CD (ZENCD203)

CD Softpack - B&W Rough Board

£8.00

Tracklist

  • CD
  • Japanese Edition CD
  • 2xLP
  • MP3
  • 16-bit WAV
  1. 1
    Liquesce
  2. 2
    At Night  (featuring Mai Nestor)
  3. 3
    Sleeprunner
  4. 4
    The Earth Is Blind  (Prelude)
  5. 5
    The Road
  6. 6
    Ra_Light
  7. 7
    It'll Be Over Soon
  8. 8
    One Letter From Death
  9. 9
    Ghosts Of Then & Now
  10. 10
    Love Theme From Foreverness
  11. 11
    Lights Out / In Shinjuku
  12. 12
    Near The End
  13. 13
    Embryonic
  14.  
    Play All (13)
  1. 1
    Liquesce
  2. 2
    At Night  (featuring Mai Nestor)
  3. 3
    Sleeprunner
  4. 4
    The Earth Is Blind  (Prelude)
  5. 5
    The Road
  6. 6
    Ra_Light
  7. 7
    It'll Be Over Soon
  8. 8
    One Letter From Death
  9. 9
    Ghosts Of Then & Now
  10. 10
    Love Theme From Foreverness
  11. 11
    Lights Out / In Shinjuku
  12. 12
    Near The End
  13. 13
    Embryonic
  14. 14
    Hand Shadows  (Bonus Track)
    Album only
  15.  
    Play All (13)
  1. 1
    Liquesce
  2. 2
    At Night  (featuring Mai Nestor)
  3. 3
    Sleeprunner
  4. 4
    The Earth Is Blind  (Prelude)
  5. 5
    The Road
  6. 6
    Ra_Light
  7. 7
    It'll Be Over Soon
  8. 8
    One Letter From Death
  9. 9
    Ghosts Of Then & Now
  10. 10
    Love Theme From Foreverness
  11. 11
    Lights Out / In Shinjuku
  12. 12
    Near The End
  13. 13
    Embryonic
  14.  
    Play All (13)
  1. 1
    Liquesce
  2. 2
    At Night  (featuring Mai Nestor)
  3. 3
    Sleeprunner
  4. 4
    The Earth Is Blind  (Prelude)
  5. 5
    The Road
  6. 6
    Ra_Light
  7. 7
    It'll Be Over Soon
  8. 8
    One Letter From Death
  9. 9
    Ghosts Of Then & Now
  10. 10
    Love Theme From Foreverness
  11. 11
    Lights Out / In Shinjuku
  12. 12
    Near The End
  13. 13
    Embryonic
  14.  
    Play All (13)
  1. 1
    Liquesce
  2. 2
    At Night  (featuring Mai Nestor)
  3. 3
    Sleeprunner
  4. 4
    The Earth Is Blind  (Prelude)
  5. 5
    The Road
  6. 6
    Ra_Light
  7. 7
    It'll Be Over Soon
  8. 8
    One Letter From Death
  9. 9
    Ghosts Of Then & Now
  10. 10
    Love Theme From Foreverness
  11. 11
    Lights Out / In Shinjuku
  12. 12
    Near The End
  13. 13
    Embryonic
  14.  
    Play All (13)

Ryan Hunn, AKA Illum Sphere, is founder of Manchester’s renowned club night Hoya:Hoya, has remixed Radiohead, toured the world’s best club nights and released music on some of its finest imprints – 3024, Tectonic, Young Turks, and now Ninja Tune, where he’s found a long term home.

His album arrives on the back of eager e...

Ryan Hunn, AKA Illum Sphere, is founder of Manchester’s renowned club night Hoya:Hoya, has remixed Radiohead, toured the world’s best club nights and released music on some of its finest imprints – 3024, Tectonic, Young Turks, and now Ninja Tune, where he’s found a long term home.

His album arrives on the back of eager expectation. If anyone seemed set to make one of the standout albums of the era, it was Illum Sphere. The good news is that he’s delivered in spades.

Ghosts Of Then And Now has been deliberately and uncompromisingly conceived as a full length record; an album in the traditional sense, full of music that couldn’t be more modern, whilst nodding to Hunn's various influences.

Opener "Liquesce" – which features the drumming of Shigeto – is aptly titled, conjuring as it does a sense of blissful dissolution. It also contains a haunting refrain that’s deceptively familiar, the sort of melody line you’ll hear for years. The song ends abruptly (and cleverly) in a deep intake of breath, as if preparing itself for the album ahead.

"At Night" shows not only how adept with vocals Illum Sphere is – layering Mai Nestor of Facit’s beautiful voice into his music in a startlingly effective fashion – but also just how far he pushes the template of his form. Elements of all the go-to genres’ glitch, bass and drum experimentation are present here, but Hunn has mastered them completely, using them only for genuine emotive effect.

"The Road" is the first of three fruitful collaborations with Shadowbox, AKA Bonnie Baxter. Driving drums with an industrial edge merge with anxious synths and looping, lilting melodies, the distinctive, rich vocal both seductive and foreboding.

"It’ll Be Over Soon" builds from an exploratory, ominous groove to a frenetic, restless release, in a study of mood that approaches the existential. "Lights Out / In Shinjuku’s" deep bass and elemental, sci-fi synths steer the album towards its transcendental ending in "Embryonic." This the final part of the three Shadowbox collaborations, see her return to glorious effect. A simple, shuffle-swing drum and haunting melody give way to abruptly to ocean-deep bass and vast, emotive melody.

Ghosts Of Then And Now is further proof that electronic music is taking giant leaps forward. This is a record so rich in ideas, themes, textures and writing that it will draw the listener in time and time again. As such, it will take its place alongside the best works in the form.