Like a collage of the human experience, Clay Bassford, who releases music under the moniker Clay in Mono, shares a dazzling debut of textural elements and morphing beats on Entry. This 17-minute mini-album, out on August 5, oscillates between experimental electronic ballads and cinematic ambient soundscapes in a brilliant conjecture of dreamy reality. No song is alike as Bassford works with minute precision on each beat or stacked musical element.
He explains that Entry was created after a decade of home recording in NYC, Berlin, Copenhagen, LA and most recently, Vancouver. Representing his years as “a sort of digital troubadour,” the record is a culmination of “composing and recording in isolation, processing the nuances of human experiences through synthesized texture, groove and lyrics.”
Tracks like the opener, “Stick,” immediately play intriguingly with textural elements of all genres, taking listeners on a sojourn exploring the nooks and crannies of being. On “(Off Camera) Solstice,” Bassford’s lyrical prowess shines through with open-ended candidness akin to the authenticity of folk music. In a modulated voice, he sings, “Around the corner, cutting me off, you and I going off, another time.”
Then in “Marmeleira,” Bassford ushers in an unexpected moment of brilliant meditation. With a fluttering background brimming with peaceful nature sounds, subtle chimes and the warm tone of an acoustic guitar, the track feels like a mosaic of artful ease. On the final track, “Yellow Sheen,” Bassford comes to a climactic and groovy crescendo as if closing on a high note of profound self-realization.