album - 22 June 2015
01) Capricious Skies
02) The Bel-Air Rocketman
05) In The Realm Of The Super-Cute
06) The Invisible City Of Christian Rosenkruetz
07) A Charming Trick
08) Method Acting
09) A Garden That Sings To The Sky
11) The Years
12) The Last Romantic
The Years is an instrumental album issued in a one-off print run of 500 copies on the Sonoluxe label.
Nelson revealed little in the way of detail about the development of this particular album, but it's likely that it progressed over a period of some time, and only really took shape once he had assembled sufficient material to make an album from his symphonic-based instrumentals. A posting on the Dreamsville forum from February 2014 refers to him nearly having completed "an epic neo-classical, pastoral, symphonic piece" during the writing sessions for the Velorama film soundtrack which may well have ended up on The Years album.
The title The Years was first announced on the Dreamsville forum in late January 2015 when Nelson revealed it as an album he was then working on, and for which the final track running order was confirmed just a few weeks later. The album was originally to be issued after Loom, but once Nelson heard the mastered version he decided to bring its release date forward. It was also intended to be the third in the 'Super Listener Series' but in the end Nelson deemed The Years to be insufficiently challenging to be awarded that status, and it was given a normal Sonoluxe catalogue number.
The album went on sale on 22 June 2015, and was in stock for a month before finally selling out on 1 August.
Available for purchase as a digital download here in the Dreamsville Store.
IF YOU LIKED THIS ALBUM, YOU'LL PROBABLY ENJOY:
Picture Post, Pedalscope, Albion Dream Vortex, All That I Remember, Alchemical Adventures of Sailor Bill,
Luxury Wonder Moments, Model Village, Fables and Dreamsongs, Stereo Star Maps, Quiet Bells
"The Years could mean the many years of making music, or the 66 years of being on this planet, or the 'wear and tear' of the years, or a looking back at them...I wanted it to be enigmatic, and slightly melancholy and nostalgic.
However, the music on the album, in the main, is kind of kitsch and easy-listening, quite jolly in parts but with deeper reflective moments. As always, it's not turned out quite the way I expected. It's not as pure or perfect as I'd hoped, but it's been made very spontaneously with a feeling of urgency. It's not an album that I've pondered too deeply or furrowed my brow about. It's emerged almost of its own accord. No doubt it will find its place, in time.
It's all instrumental, uses orchestral sounds with some guitar parts. Neo-classical/light music forms. The nearest thing to it would be parts of Picture Post, Pedalscope and the instrumental tracks from The Alchemical Adventures of Sailor Bill. It's a strange thing in some ways, seems quite straight and easy on the surface but has a complexity in structure that undermines that. It's not quite what it appears to be!"
"Neo-classical composition isn't really about playing technique...it's more of a compositional approach. It takes classical music and re-frames it in a kind of 'post-modernist' atmosphere, referencing much older musical forms but with a twist. On this album, I pick up on the kind of music you might hear in those old black and white, between the wars and WW2 documentary films, (you know, those GPO film unit productions like 'Listen to Britain' by Humphrey Jennings, etc.) I'm particularly fond of that era and musical style but bring a more contemporary feel to bear on this album. It appears deliberately kitsch in places, superficially verging on easy listening but revealing more complexities and conundrums on deeper listening. It's meant to offer a somewhat enigmatic listening experience which never completely resolves itself."
"Not a 'down' album at all, despite my health issues and general darkness. It's an album of hope, of positivity, of beauty triumphing over drabness, a transcendent album, with a tinge of nostalgia and gentle melancholy at the heart of it."
"I tell you what - it's a bloody great album! It actually took me a few days to really understand what's going on.
It's kind of like what happens if a UFO lands in Model Village.
The cinematic quality of the music cannot be exaggerated and there are some truly great moments from start to finish.
The Years, is for me yet another special release.
It hit me today, like a sledgehammer - really stopped me in my tracks. Gobsmacked"
"The Years is a delightful collection of music and, as some have said, sits well with Model Village.
But, as I sit here on a sunny Sunday morning in my study, with a cup of tea, catching up on paper work and other bits and pieces with The Years playing I can straight away hear that it is a rather more complex composition than Model Village punctuated with wonderful, sweet guitar sounds that only Bill can pull off..."Capricious Skies", "Southport", "Method Acting", "The Years'...all truly stunning!"
Tourist in Wonderland:
'This new release really demands your attention...lots going on (in a good way)...many questions, much to discover, much wow-factor-ness.
Initially blown away by "The Invisible City of Christian Rosenkruetz", "A Charming Trick", "Odeon”, "The Years", "The Last Romantic".
Can't stand chatting all day...got some seriously jaw-dropping music to listen to."
"The guitar (as you won't be surprised to hear) is blissful, and combines wonderfully with the 'orchestral' sound/arrangements. A complex album, I think, which will take more than a few listens to get a proper sense of it."
"Once again the more you play it the more it makes sense, in my opinion. Another Bill Nelson masterpiece. It seems to sound even better listened to very late at night. Thank you again Mr Nelson."
"After I'd finished listening to it on day two, I absent-mindedly pushed the FM button on my stereo, which was on the classical music station, and went outside for a bit, and when I returned I became aware of this beautiful sound coming out of my speakers and assumed it was still The Years that was playing! This went on for a good while before I realized what had happened! (Sometimes aging brings with it these little miracles of absent-minded fun.)
But that kinda sums up this album in a strange way. It is 'deceptive' as Bill has stated. Each day that I've listened, it feels like I'm playing a whole new album! This is not unique in itself as many of Bill's albums do this, but The Years seems to make me more aware that this is happening somehow. This album also has a Bill Frisell kinda vibe to it (in its subtlety and strange beauty). Definitely one of Bill's best ever recordings."