Canaan Balsam is an electronic composer and musician based in Edinburgh. He uses field recordings, found sounds, hardware and a range of software to create immersive soundscapes. His work explores the dead space between ambient and new age music; the liminal zone between the harshness of industrial and the beatific serenity of devotional music.
Responding to the context where ever-expanding modes of communication seem only to blur the line between connectivity and solitude, Canaan often returns to the theme of loneliness in his work - how it can grow and metastasize, until it becomes incommunicable, resistant to empathy; an alien host overtaking the body.
Cruise Utopia was recorded over the last 3 years and it's Canaan's first solo work after leaving the industrial outfit NAKED.
Tape limited to 50 units.
Artwork by Alicia Carrera.
"Your heart beat slowly bleeds
Into the soft dawn chorus
Of the city outside
The hum of electricity
The sub bass of transformers
Factories awake from slumber
Current slowly uncoils
Into white fluorescence
Static unfurls like a petal
Beneath the skin of wall, of plaster
Frozen electric veins vibrate
Flutter against your skin
Like eye lashes"
released December 2, 2020
'Moscow does not believe in tears': narration by Calvin Z Laing.
'I feel like a cigarette burn': sample from Edinburgh School for the Deaf hidden track.
'Life is a horizontal fall': narration by Cosima Cobley Carr, vocals by Emma Jane Stirling.
'One Rat short of a plague': narration by Ron Nichols and Cosima Cobley Carr.
'*Attention, Potion Magique!': narration by Tabitha Brown.
'The rats have gone, the bottles drunk, the ship has sunk': narration by Daniel Mutch.
All songs by Canaan Balsam except for 'I feel like a cigarette burn' by Canaan Balsam / Edinburgh School for the Deaf.
Produced and mixed by Canaan Balsam
Mastered by Pedro Vian
Art design: Alicia Carrera
Thanks to: David and Pedro at Passat Continu, Cosima Cobley Carr, Graeme Rose, Alexander Johnston, Emma Jane Stirling, Calvin Laing, Sofia, Tabi, Casper, Ashley Brown, Jamie Brown, Kieran Naughton, and Ron Nichols.
Warning: this recording contains extreme volume peaks [tk 4 & 6]
At times obscure and convoluted and then suddenly ethereal and soothing, this album from Pedro Vian is a masterpiece of experimental electronic music. I am happy I stumbled upon him. White Noise from Electronic Toys