- EXC 002
- Arms And Sleepers — "Black Paris 86"
- 14 December 2007
About the record
Arms and Sleepers started one night in the back of an ambulance in Cambridge. In an alleyway a man was bleeding with a cassette player in hand, the play button still on. What sounded like recordings of a gospel choir blared from the tin speaker while down the street, a jazz band could be heard. The man was dying. He dropped the cassette player on the cement and closed his eyes, the sound carrying through the air into his ears for one last time. Though this moment in time died with him, his cassette lived on - and Arms and Sleepers was born.
With the intention to keep the spirit and the music of this night alive, Max Lewis (programming, keyboards) and Mirza Ramic (bass, keyboards) founded Arms and Sleepers. With electronic sources being the main focus in their compositions, the two are nevertheless creating a warm sound with ambient undercurrents. Varying configurations of rich, brassy textures, choppy beats and ethereal vocals make up an overall yield that is an engaging, subterranean pulse driven by amorphous low-end frequencies. Overall the sound matches the intentional tragic tale.
Listening to "Black Paris 86" feels like sitting in a cinema, watching landscapes, beauty and tragedy. Feeling warm and safe while a hint of mystery seems to whisper that not everything is ok out there. The latter doesn't seem to be far fetched when Ramic talks about the band's name: "For me, the meaning of Arms and Sleepers is the meaning of so much of the world today and in the past, and probably the future. While so many are fighting and killing ("arms"), others are ignoring it all (the "sleepers").
The live shows underline the cinematic experience. The duo's performance is combined with visuals by Dado Ramadani, a talented artist from Boston. The visuals, dealing with the subjects of the songs, are synchronized with the rhythm of each song. The collaboration between the band and Ramadani provides the audience with a full audio and visual experience.
"Black Paris 86" is a tight, intense record, showing a young band at a stage you wouldn't expect it to be on yet. Connected to different kinds of music, from ambient-influenced indie rock to calm, sometimes hypnotic music with dozens of other styles flowing in, the album shows the development the band has made in the past year, resulting in a unique and original style.
- Track Listing
- 01. Greetings From Tokyo
- 02. A Mission To Prague MP3
- 03. Lausanne
- 04. Black Paris 86
- 05. Seems (If Ever)
- 06. 71 Fragments Of A Chronology Of Chance
- 07. Warm
- 08. I Was A Climber
- 09. Butterflycatcher
- 10. Like A Typewriter From A Moving Train
- 11. Rooftops/Lanterns
- 12. We're All Paris Now (Pt. 3)