As reported by Pitchfork, Ben Marc has announced his new album Glass Effect, and shared a track, "Mustard," from the upcoming full length.
The new album is due in April and is an assured and accomplished 13-track realization of a singular vision that unifies a multitudinous profusion of influences (from free-jazz, to broken beat, to hip hop and beyond) into a sublime whole, underscoring the evolution of his quest for a distinctive sound: lambent, low-key, and yet dizzyingly intricate. It’s a rare talent that can link Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood, Ethio-jazz pioneer Mulatu Astatke, Afrofuturists Sun Ra Arkestra, and grime legend Dizzee Rascal, but Marc has long blurred musical worlds and criss-crossed boundaries. On double and electric bass, he flits between jazz, classical, and electronic music, whether playing on Greenwood’s award-winning score for the film The Master or touring with Astatke for over 10 years, as well as working with the likes of Matthew Herbert, Charles Mingus, China Moses, and Soweto Kinch – and even joining Tina Turner once onstage.
Marc, the alias of Neil Charles, has quite the musical pedigree. While studying classical double bass at the prestigious Trinity College of Music in London, Marc had a chance meeting with Gary Crosby, linchpin of Tomorrow’s Warriors (the crucial London jazz educators that connect the UK new wave luminaries, from Nubya Garcia to Moses Boyd) after which the possibility of jazz shone like a beacon. This began a game-changing journey that led him to play with the jazz group Empirical and then to form the free-jazz trio Zed-U, alongside Shabaka Hutchings (Sons of Kemet, The Comet is Coming) and drummer Tom Skinner, whose collaborations ignited a new passion in Marc for electronic music.
KCRW describes the track "Mustard" in it's 5 songs of the week: This is not a track, it’s a score. Expertly arranged by producer and composer Ben Marc, “Mustard” is a kinetic piece of music, a sidewinder, an undulating sonic story — and it’ll move you in so many ways. Play this one through headphones and minimize the distractions to make sense of whatever mess is in your head.