Biography

They say moving house can be one of life's most stressful tasks. If one
person knows about that its Manchester-based musical craftsman Marc
Rigelsford, or as he's become better known, Magic Arm. More used to
wiring up microphones and keyboards than picking out wallpaper patterns,
no one, least of all him, would have expected some innocent
house-hunting to give life to a brand new album.

"/I didn't think about recording at home until the new house began to
empty as people moved out," /he reveals./"But I was slowly introduced to
the perfect studio...  houses have windows, studios don't. There's
something uninspiring about not being able to see a car or a bird."/


Following 2009's debut album Make Lists Do Something, Images Rolling is
a further exploration of the musical playground that is Magic Arm's
world. Somewhere between 'This Way Up' cardboard boxes and the stairwell
in which the new record's violin and trumpet sounds were recorded, a
studio setting fitting of NASA gradually took shape. Boasting an array
of cables, switches, and instruments donated by friends and family such
as a piano, guitar, bass, synths, keyboards, glockenspiel, various types
of organ, and drums, Rigelsford's new sound workshop offered the perfect
balance between vocational artistic freedom and a chaotic living
space;/"Tripping over your instruments on your way to the kitchen is a
constant reminder that there is something else that you should be
doing," /he confesses.

Always one to find new avenues of exploring what's readily presented in
front of him simply by 'giving it a whirl' rather than exercising any
form of technical training, Rigelsford is a true DIY pop maverick. From
the colourful television theme music of Ski Sunday to that of the
detective shows he grew up with, plus a penchant for big soundtracks
like those of The Godfather, A fistful of Dollars, and Michael Galasso's
In the Mood for Love, his naturally inquisitive sense of sonic adventure
has always been provoked by all that surrounds him.


Musing on a bout of melancholic nostalgia ('Images Rolling' refers to
reflecting the past and the way that you can scroll through memories
"like a television on the blink", he says), this record is the sound of
one man exploring not only where he's been but also commenting upon the
present; editing, re-editing, then editing again, an album itself. "/It
all goes into pro tools in a fairly unorganised fashion stacking track
after track without much consideration to start with... then the process
of arranging it begins. There is A LOT of editing on this record. There
are 70 versions of 'Is History'"/

Moving away from the more electronic sound of his debut LP, Images
Rolling has taken on the natural reverbs of the vast part-derelict
three-storey house, coming over as an altogether warmer and more
comforting entity. Take infectious opener 'Put Your Collar Up';
classical sounds are thrown off centre by detuned pianos and woozy
synths that move with hip hop bounce. Elsewhere Warning Sign recalls the
ambience of Mercury Rev's weirdly magical off-kilter daydreams whilst
Lanes' sweeping strings and the merry-go-round waltz of Great Life give
light to Rigelsford's new method of exploration in writing songs on a
piano rather than a guitar for the very first time.


"/After finishing the first album I bought a piano with the intention of
learning it and it being a key part of the new album. I spent a few
months learning Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata as an entry point."/

From entry point to its end Images Rolling is a restless, fearlessly
ambitious, yet understated and articulate piece of work. No-one could
ever accuse Rigelsford of making music that fits into any pigeon-shaped
holes, but with this record he's certainly found a musical home.

Latest News

Warning Sign - 08.07.2013

Manchester's Grizzly Bear-approved Magic Arm makes warm, nostalgic soundtracks for distant memories

Images Rolling Tour - 29.04.2013

 

Magic Arm will play a string of special shows in churches and suitably ornate venues ahead of the album this Ma

 

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Magic Arm Images Rolling Uncut Album Review Magic Arm Images Rolling Mojo review
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