Paper Relics are brothers Harry and Stuart Towell from a small town in Lincolnshire UK, called Bourne.
As well as running the Audio Gourmet netlabel Harry is a sound designer recording as Spheruleus.
Stuart is a self taught multi guitarist with several years' experience.
As Paper Relics, the brothers manage to combine their differing musical backgrounds as a hybrid of Stuart's blues, jazz, rock and folk influence and Harry's involvement within the modern ambient music scene.
Here we present their debut EP 'Recovered Artefacts', which should serve as a light introduction to their sound and nod towards the arrival of their first full album, which will be out later in the year.
Thematically, this EP is based around a photograph of the Malvern Hills that was taken by Stuart on a weekend away. After treating the image to make it look antiquated, the pair agreed on the title 'Recovered Artefact' as with the addition of vintaging effects, it looked very much like an old and long forgotten photograph.
After arranging the tracks into order, the duo began to think about what they felt the EP was trying to say as a package of music and treated photographic imagery. They got a vision of an elderly man discovering this old photograph of the tiny town he grew up in. Throughout the decades of his lifetime, the man had watched it change completely with constant industrial and commercial development turning the beautiful village it once was into a large and busy town.
'Recovered Artefact' tells the story of a man and his town as he reflects over the years of change and development that has turned this once picturesque village into something he no longer recognises...
Adam Williams (Futuresequence):
Paper Relics is an experimental music project recently formed by brothers Harry and Stuart Towell. While Stuart is a self taught multi-instrumentalist in his own right, readers will likely be more familiar with Harry's work, both for his own ambient/drone music under the moniker Spheruleus and as curator of the Audio Gourmet netlabel In Paper Relics, both brothers are given a chance to explore their mutual musical interests to their fullest extent.
The title of Recovered Artefact and indeed of the band itself, bring to mind images of reminiscence and of the passing of time and it is this mood which surrounds this debut EP, proving to be wistful and melancholic without becoming maudlin. The guitar work has an experimental flavour and in its makeup there are influences of blues, jazz and folk. When considering Stuart has found his way onto previous Spheruleus material and that Harry writes music in a broadly similar style himself, it is notable that Paper Relics has an identity of its own. The brothers narrate a story with the all-instrumental music and each track revolves around the artists unhurried guitar playing, often taking the form of Harry choosing to strum acoustic guitar chord shapes while his sibling plays electric lead, both in a loose laid back manner and usually joined by field recordings and found sounds.
There is something particularly satisfying when listening to music of high quality which still contains the occasional minor blemish such as a note not quite perfectly fingered or a scrape of the frets and this helps to give the EP an authentic and perhaps even a retrospective feel, harking back to a time before digital recording techniques could give an unnatural sheen to music. Recovered Artefact represents an honest account of the talent and the technique behind Paper Relics and is all the stronger for it.
released January 11, 2011
Electric Guitar, Acoustic Guitar (Lead), Recording: Stuart Towell
Acoustic Guitar, Violin, Field Recordings, Sound Design: Harry Towell
Photography: Stuart Towell