BC Camplight: “The Last Rotation Of Earth” Album Review – his final epilogue…


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Rating: 4 out of 5.

After taking stock from his album release show at Rough Trade Notts last night (that I missed), we draw a bath and get cosy with Camplight’s latest.

Oddly appetising American Brian Christinzio has always been lauded for his work in circles. More often than not, they’re the smaller circles within the widespread industry, as Mr Camplight is often seen as an individual to slip beneath the radar, avoid the glaring lights of mainstream and create emphatically alternative music for the alternative folk.

Rumoured to be his final and finest album, The Last Rotation of Earth draws in him at his most inimitable. Brazen in lyrical exploration from conversations with Tesco guys to remarking British television classics, he has taken to his re-settling in Manchester since he was deported from his adopted home so many moons ago. He now resides in Manchester again, gaining an Italian passport through his family background.

Dripping in that psychedelic mantra that we’ve all grown accustomed to, see his final spiral in his seventh.

It may be hard to follow Guardian’s “masterpiece” of 2020’s Shortly After Takeoff, but it’s harder creating an album of entirely new material.

The first we got to see of BC Camplight for his new music was self-titled lead, The Last Rotation of Earth, which is also getting a fair share of rotations on BBC Radio 6 Music, too. A derailed exterior of Arcade Fire, The Last Rotation Of Earth sees skittish solos and keyed-up lyrics, “You, you, you missed a hell of a party” / I said to the kitchen floor,” as Brian contemplates the end of the world. It follows a cinematic monologue with The Movie as he plays out scenes in a disjointed B movie of sheer strangeness, all the while entering a swelling chorus led by swooning strings and jangly acoustics. Something that Gruff Rhys will be particularly fond of, I’m sure. Kicking Up A Fuss, meanwhile, is a searing palette of an ’80s problem child, led by synth lines and jaunty guitar; a style we’ve become familiar with Gaz Coombes recent, too.

This album isn’t lacklustre in the array of instruments on display either. There’s the nuances to clarinet and saxes at the reprise of She’s Gone Cold, which is met with a discoloured piano melody line all the while melting as an egg shaker keeps the balance right. Who said that the instruments on your studio album have to be expensive?

“I think I need a drink / it’s snowing in the lounge. The fish tank is frozen. Poor seamonkey town. It feels like Christmas Eve on May the Seventeenth. She says, “you don’t have to say it, I don’t know what she means. […] I think I figured out, it’s right infront of me. Inflation is something to do with the Tories. She asked what we’re building, I said what do you think this is – Homes Under the Hammer?

I’m the perfect man.”

She’s Gone Gold, BC Camplight

We’re entering the party comedown phase of the album; the face-down on the floor feelings, the contemplative sounds raw with that bohemian emotion. Fear: Life in a Dozen Years is a scary portrayal in an oddly beautiful soundscape, while Going Out On A Low Note may be a dramatic reading of Brian’s final epilogue, as he ironically sings the chorus in his highest range possible, “my brain says stay the course, pretty rich considering the source. But I’m not positive, but I’m pretty sure / you shouldn’t cry when you listen to Faith No More.” The mood is brought up somewhat with I’m Ugly, despite its connotations with the song title. A disconcerted Brian struggles to grips in The Mourning as he discusses the passing of his father, a subject he’s touched on more than once throughout the album itself.

A psychedelic disconcerting journey of ’70s metro, Bowie-esque vocals of soothing honey are met with cut-throat synths and jaggedy swells that rip through the very presence of Christinzio’s ability to function. Above the uncomfortably funny remarks and insatiable lyrics that make less and less sense the more you listen to them, there is an added depth of beauty to this album. A regalia of melancholy fastened to Brian’s helm; a forever-piece “created in the shadow of incredible darkness”. Brian goes on to say, “One from which the creator hadn’t planned on escaping, and still doesn’t. Hence the title of the album. It is the result of an illness that I’ve battled my whole life. It isn’t something that the world has done to me. It’s the world I live in and it’s no one’s fault”.

This is BC Camplight’s final chapter. It’s certainly worth the read. No matter how uncomfortable you may get with it.

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