Last month Inventions, the collaboration between Eluvium’s Matthew Cooper and Mark T. Smith of Explosions In The Sky, released the first single from their upcoming second album Maze of Woods. To create a music video for the single, entitled “Springworlds,” the duo went to animator Dan W. Jacobs to pursue an intensely collaborative process. The resulting video follows a lone character who is drawn away from his home into the outside world then confronted with a massive storm.
Inventions’ atmospheric intonations wash over the viewer like the shimmering, animated rain washes over the featureless protagonist, creating a beautiful synergy between the music and the visuals. Watch it below…
The natural interaction between sight and sound is due in part to the synergy that developed between Jacobs, Cooper, and Smith. “The collaboration began as an exchange of thoughts, feelings and responses to the track,” Jacobs recalls to The Creators Project. Cooper and Smith happened to be working along the coast of Oregon when they were recruiting filmmakers for the new video. Cooper says they were going through a lineup of “a bunch of cool artists, but Dan just stood out. He immediately felt so natural of a fit for us.”
Maze of Woods opens with a vocal sample declaring, “I wanted to do something that I don’t know how to do.” Using this as a mission statement, Inventions have crafted a complex and exuberant album from an array of instruments, samples, found sounds, beats, chants, and raw bursts of noise, with a much greater emphasis on strong vocal accompaniment in every song. Two albums released in the span of 10 months speaks to the drive that these two have felt since they started playing together. Much like on the first record, they again mixed the album in a house on the Oregon coastline, with final mixing and production all done by Smith and Cooper.
Inventions have stated that much of the inspiration for Maze of Woods comes from the closing paragraph of Denis Johnson’s novella Train Dreams. In that paragraph, Johnson describes the non-verbal howl of a feral wolf boy, a pre-language that is yearning and instinctual; a statement of wordless distress and love. Maze of Woods is the product of two masters of their craft getting lost in the wilderness, “doing something that they don’t know how to do,” and emerging with something wholly unexpected and beguilingly beautiful.
Maze of Woods will be released 16th March on Bella Union (17th March in the US on Temporary Residence).
Maze Of Woods tracklisting:
4. Slow Breathing Circuit
5. A Wind From All Directions
8. Feeling The Sun Thru The Earth At Night