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Hedgerow Throne

Denver, United States

Credit - Andrew Spencer

Andrew Spencer describes himself as "The Sacrificing Hands and an outsider cottage industrialist". Predominately instrumental, his work is obscure and atmospheric making for great creativity for those who love "out of the box" thinking! Although the artist is currently based in Denver (Colorado), Andrew Spencer lived his formative years in the North of England. Reminiscing these influences the artist stated the following - “My early days in Lancashire inform much of my work" and “My earliest memories are of walking the fields and moors, exploring ruins and forgotten places”.

Released on September 28th, 2022 the "Hedgerow Throne" EP marks the latest in a long line of soundscapes. Consisting of six spellbinding instrumentals, this is one that anybody who is interested or intrigued by British Culture/History could only dream of...Until now!

The project opens with "Killing a Hare" - Well, as far as soundscapes go this is a production that ticks every box. The mixing technique is second to none! A mix of futurism with the medieval string influence of the past makes this a creation that defies the present and leaves you flying through the future whilst reminiscing the past that you never existed in! The vocal layer offers a distorted speech that lingers beneath the main body of the production leaving listeners intrigued and fascinated.

"Aphelion" continues along the line of British History providing listeners with what I can only describe as a modern interpretation of the Tudor Reign. The blending of medieval strings stands strong within the piece with an underlayer of modern string interpretations. Again, THE SACRIFICING HANDS has managed to merge elements of British Culture both historic and present within his creation. An extremely impressive instrumental!

"The King is not England" is an interesting production indeed. Here we are taken out of a Tudor-influenced piece and into the religious-like, classical realm of the Church Of England. This is a super exciting interpretation of the "Upper Class" stereotypes of British Culture. Church organs are mixed with experimental synths and a haunting bassline to create an edgy transition within the piece. There is one very clear statement that makes it's vocal dominant here and that is that "The King is not England".

"This Country Life" is true to its title, the scales of the production had me envisioning nature and more specifically open meadows full of the greenest grass. There remains the Medieval string inspiration throughout which only adds to the temporal visionary of the track. I think that this song symbolises freedom, a vast amount of space on a Summer's day. The keys within "This Country Life" add that extra tint of space within the production adding the perfect accompanying melody. Shortly after the midpoint of the piece, the winds take a turn, darker instrumentation is used in line with haunting choir-like vocal chops and an increase in tempo to give the listener the sense that things are getting serious. If you want a whole story without words then look no further, this is the piece.

"Hedgerow Throne" marks the presence of an extremely haunting project through the instant darkness that presents itself. The opening whisks listeners into a spiritual experience in the form of vocal chanting and the crackling of firewood. This soon develops into an extremely heavy and dark production! This piece is full of dark tones from the minor string compositions to the urgency and deepness of the bass and brass instrumentation tones. There are many kicks and vocal chops that vary in velocity to take listeners into a "Burnt and the stake" or "off to war" experience.

"Crossing the Bridge" concludes the EP with ease. There remains a sense of curiosity within the piece - maybe "Crossing the Bridge" is symbolic of new beginnings? The start of something different after the war? or an existential revelation? I do not know, but what I do know is that this whole project is one that I thoroughly enjoyed! It's different to the commercial pieces that get handed my way on a regular basis. "Hedgerow Throne" is an EP that tells the tale of classic British history in a way that is cohesive and curious!


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