GOODPARLEY – TWO MEDITATIONS FOR FREYA
digital EP released today | remixes by Alka & Xqui
Two improvised pieces for guitar. Recorded by Oli Richards (Goodparley) on 10 February 2022 in response to a concept by Mat Smith.
1. Meditation Twenty-Four (i) (For Freya)
2. Meditation Twenty-Four (ii) (For Freya)
3. Meditation Twenty-Four (i) (For Freya) – Alka Remix
4. Meditation Twenty-Four (ii) (For Freya) – Xqui Remix
Response: Oli Richards
Concept: Mat Smith
Design: Neil Coe
A Mortality Tables Product
CONCEPT NOTES BY MAT SMITH
‘Two Meditations For Freya’ is a sound response to anxiety.
On 10 January 2022, my youngest daughter found herself too scared to sleep. She was never a great sleeper as a baby and toddler, and now, as a teenager, often struggles to relax enough for bed.
This night was different, however. She seemed to be gripped by an intense and unrelenting panic which she could not explain. In context, she had been receiving weekly cognitive behavioural therapy treatment for anxiety and depression through CHUMS, a Bedfordshire charity focused on helping young people cope with mental health issues. She’d had one of her weekly sessions earlier that day and it seemed to have triggered something inside her, but she could not – or perhaps would not – articulate it.
In an effort to help her, I offered to stay in her room so that she could feel safe and reassured enough to drift off. As she tossed and turned, I decided to practice some guided meditation in the midnight darkness of her room. She eventually fell asleep while listening to the rhythm of my breath. For the next week, we practiced short meditations together every night just before bed, and she slept better every night that week.
Around that time I was working with Oli Richards as he prepared his album Meditations Vol. 1 for release by Wormhole World. The album collected five improvised guitar ‘meditations’, each one recorded in the first few minutes after he woke up in the morning. Oli had begun releasing these pieces in November 2021, and I had been struck by their beauty and simplicity. I began seeing them as brief moments of acute stillness in which to detach from the world, and support my own meditation practice.
I approached Oli with the story of how Freya couldn’t sleep and asked if he’d consider recording an improvisation for her, to support the meditations she and I were doing together. His recordings were made on 10 February 2022 at his home in Cardiff. They were originally released through Oli’s Bandcamp page later the same day.
All proceeds from this release will go to CHUMS. CHUMS provides mental health and emotional wellbeing support for children, young people and their families.
Goodparley (Oli Richards) is a Cardiff-based musician and sound artist. His sounds are largely based around improvised ambient guitar loops and textures, manipulated in real-time using various modulating effects to create inherently experimental soundscapes.
ABOUT MORTALITY TABLES
“In an effort to circumvent our unalterable mortality, we create. We make SOUNDS, ART, WORDS. These things are our INSURANCE against death.”
– Mortality Tables, On Mortality, Immortality & Charles Ives (2022)
E Peritia Ratio: reason from experience.
Nothing happens without context. Every event has a catalyst. There is no such thing as a blank page.
So it goes that each Mortality Tables Product must begin with an outline of an initial creative concept – a thought; a notion; a moment of serious whimsy; a considered reflection on life, memory, love, loss, trauma, death.
We document those ideas, then invite collaborators to respond freely to them.
They may ignore us. They may say no. They may say yes. Whoever we invite to participate shall be unencumbered by restriction, constraint, expectation, convention, limit or judgement.
There are never any right or wrong answers, because there are no questions. There is nothing more than the idea and the response.
Est. Bloomsbury, 2019
Mortality Tables illustration by Savage Pencil
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