Friday 28 August 2020

'Every Dog' video release [Arcadian Resonance]

Arcadian Resonance is PLAYFIO's second studio album.
A black folder sits on a forgotten shelf in my house collecting dust, where a collection of scrawled lyrics live back from my younger years when i was in my teenage band. I meticulously kept all these written sheets, many are covers from Radiohead, Nirvana, U2, Bush etc. with guitar tabs  and scribbled notes about our performance but the vast majority are original lyrics. (Memory permitting here is our old band 'Brass Monkeys' - Set list' as a playlist on Spotify.

Back then we did actually write and perform a fair bit of our own material, and if memory serves it went down pretty well. The old recordings of these, some on minidisc, are unfortunately barely audible now.
In my last album 'Arcadian Rhythm' I did bring one track back to life from an old recording:  Elizium - and the original song in all it's raw, gritty glory I made into a music video, which I'm pretty sure is still on youtube...leaves the room/ scratches head..ok found it  Elizium

Below is the official PLAYFIO music video:

Anyway, I somewhat digress, the reason for these ramblings, with my recent song writing, I was keen for some lyrical inspiration so took this old folder along with me to the recording studio (sounds v. glamourous I know) the reality is renting out a 5x5m sound proofed room crammed full of gear for a 12 hour stint of zero daylight/ interruptions/ people - quite heavenly as it goes! .

So on one of these half day sessions, I reached for the folder and came across these un-used lyrics, discarded at the time, who knows why - probably young love!  I added  them to this track and never looked back - it was almost like they'd been waiting all this time for this melody!

The video echoes the music perfectly and I can't thank Jack Tew enough for this epic cinematic masterpiece, which I'm very proud to be able to put my music to.

This fly on the wall short film provides an intimate insight into one young couple's ups and downs.

Links/ Credits:

Written by Rob Playford with Claude Etienne on guitar and the mix and master engineer was Adam Titmuss.

Rob Playford
Adam Titmuss
Claude Etienne

Film credits:

Short Love Story
Me & You: Short Love Story Me & You

Director Of Photography - David Wright

Thursday 20 August 2020

'Indian Medicine' video release [Arcadian Resonance]

This music video signals the release day for Arcadian Resonance
20:00 - 20/08/20

Massive thankyou to all who made this possible, you've all been incredibly supportive and it's been a wonderful experience.

I'm really pleased with how this one turned out and  feel privileged to work with such a talented dance choreographer, dancer and video editing guru.  Aakash did a sterling job on this music video and a big thanks goes out to him and his dance crew.

This one started off with a very simple idea. A while back I was lucky enough to be passed on my late Grandad's LPs and subsequently purchased a record player. I spent a good while recording these old 78's dance band records into a digital format and audio restoring  them to get rid of all that hiss and crackle - while in this mode, I perhaps got a bit trigger happy on eBay and charity shops buying up more LP's one of which happened to be 'The Sounds of Time - 1934-1949' which contains no end of famous speeches from the time and one of which caught my attention by Jawaharlal Nehru on transfer of power to India. An inspiring speech indeed and certainly one that came to fruition when you look at great pace of development and advancement in India.

The speech by Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of India, delivering his Tryst with Destiny speech on the eve of independence. It is considered to be one of the greatest speeches of the 20th century and hence my title choice 'Indian Medicine'. My sample includes:

"We are little men serving great causes, but because the cause is great something of that greatness falls upon us also. Mighty forces are at work in the world today and in India and I have no doubt we are ushering in a period of greatness for India."

It can sometimes feel slightly wrong just nicking a sample without fully understanding its root - so even though the contents of my track and music video wouldn't have been up Mr Nehru's street, at least I now understand a bit better and can help share that important time in history to another generation.

Written by Rob Playford with Claude Etienne on guitar and the mix and master engineer was Karol (Caught in Joy).

Guitar - Claude Etienne
Mix/ Master: Karol (Caught in Joy)

Film and dance choreography: Many thanks to Aakash Vyas and his dance crew:

Many thanks also go out to Dan Troop, who kindly provided this tracks artwork.

Wednesday 19 August 2020

Arcadian Resonance [The Official Album Review]

On the eve of the album release - I present one final promotion to get you in the mood for the new album available to stream very shortly.

Playfio - Arcadian Resonance

Playfio is the prog rock music experience brought to us by musician Rob Playford. Playfio’s first album Arcadian Rhythm garnered praise and left listeners wanting more. In the lead up to Playfio’s much anticipated second album, we have seen four teaser singles released to date, “Nameless Man”, “Memory Sweeper”, “Isolation” and “Shrinking Time”, all of which have done well to build hype. The countdown has begun as Playfio’s new album, Arcadian Resonance, is due out on August 20, 2020, and it is to be released with independent distributor Ditto Music. Arcadian Resonance is a sixteen-track effort and the album offers a lot of great experiences throughout. “All or Nothing” kicks the album off as a reverb and passion filled display; it is a track that immediately leaves you wanting more and served well to build my anticipation for the rest of the album. “Paper Wait” follows and utilizes a rise-and-fall method of blending calm and energetic moments to create an excitingly varied experience. These first two tracks did a perfect job of teasing what to expect throughout the duration of the album - an extremely varied experience - and were two quick favorites of mine. “Indian Medicine” stood out as one of my favorite tracks with its distinctive trance-y approach, featuring electronics and an EDM-esque beat; coming in at the 4th spot on the album, it completely subverted what I had thought I could expect from Playfio to that point. I found my expectations subverted quite a few times throughout the album, as the longer the album plays, the more the songs shift and even transcend genre. Another highlight of the album was the way that “Little Soul” transitions into “Diamond”, with the intro to “Diamond” starting like another mid-tempo ballad but progressing into a beautifully crunchy guitar-driven emotional release - I was left truly breathless as I experienced this for the first time.
Arcadian Resonance’s songs range anywhere from giving off 70’s rock vibes in songs like “Friday Itch”, the sweeping guitars of “Foolish Thinking” and the subtle approach on “Every Dog” to spacey vibes with the trance-y “Indian Medicine” and piano ballads “Reading and Righting” and “Little Soul”. “We” even mixed in a jazzy vibe that stood out among the other tracks. All of these songs shifting through different genres did a great job of setting up the genre-bending tracks, which felt like focal points on the album. Songs that feature all of the aforementioned genre elements in one complete package include “Isolation” “Memory Sweeper” and the space-blues masterpiece “Nameless Man”; the way that these tracks are scattered throughout the album makes it always feel like the music is building towards these incredible moments.

Overall, Arcadian Resonance is an excellent follow-up to Arcadian Rhythm. Playford’s vocals shine strong throughout each track, his passionate voice breathing light into each word he sings. His ability to capture both passionate highs and breathtaking calm moments throughout the album allow each track across the album to build in a deeply appealing way. Instrumentally, it is obvious that an incredible amount of care went into each and every note; the guitar playing is always on point, with the guitar solos on the record standing as beautifully artistic marks of musicianship, the bass and percussion always serve to build and fill out the sound in a way that serves the vocals and overall atmosphere well and the piano/electronics add a great deal of flavor and texture to each song they are present in.
There is so much more that I could say about this excellent album but I do not want to spoil what is sure to be a one of a kind listening experience. Arcadian Resonance stands as a testament to the excellent sounds Playfio provides and shines as one of my favorite albums of the year. For the feature check out Which Coast

Friday 14 August 2020

'Shrinking Time' video release [Arcadian Resonance]

Music video release from Playfio as featured on the second studio album
Piano and guitar complement one another as this track 'Shrinking Time' starts painting colour upon this blank canvas. Combined with smooth strings, this introduction effortlessly carries the listener into a world of fleeting time.

This song has had so many permutations that it's quite a pleasure to see how it's turned out. I'd originally written this song around the time of the Grenfell disaster as I was so moved after watching it unfold on tv. That first version never really worked and I didn't want to release something that wouldn't do those who lost their lives justice. For a good while it gathered dust until I gave myself another budge to finish the song for this 'ArcadianResonance' album.

Many of my lyrics and songs somehow always end up revolving about time, maybe I'm slowly realising we don't have as much as we think -  this kind of mindset has helped me battle procrastination and get going with this album. Arcadian Rhythm, my first album, took me 5 years to complete and within that time, you've heard some of those songs to death. This one albeit with more tracks has taken nearly 2 years - as I write this I am only to aware that having 16 complete tracks is only the half of it!

One interesting article I read a while back and is so very true, is the fact that a music artist never gets to hear their song for the first time - he or she never gets to experience that magical moment that with some songs can stay with people their whole life. I don't think my composition is quite at that level yet but other than loving making music, it's a wonderful thought that your song can affect people in so many different ways and these days with technology, that person could live anywhere in the world.

I've been going on quite a bit on this one (well done if you've got this far!) - I'll leave you to enjoy this song and hopefully you can also experience the incredible CGI Animated Film I'm fortunate to put my music to directed by Quentin DELEAU Lucie FONCELLE, GOUDAL Maxime Julien PARIS, Sylvain ROBERT - further information below in the credits.

Links/ Credits:

Written by Rob Playford with Claude Etienne on guitar and the mix and master engineer was Adam Titmuss.

Rob Playford
Adam Titmuss
Claude Etienne

Film credits:
Award winner Animated Chateau de Sable (Sand Castle) Short Film by ESMA - Quentin DELEAU Lucie FONCELLE, GOUDAL Maxime Julien PARIS, Sylvain ROBERT.

See the making of here:

Watch here

Friday 7 August 2020

'Isolation' video release [Arcadian Resonance]

For quite some time this never had a proper title, it'd just been named ArgU on my laptop, after an argument one evening with my other half, I'd skulked off in a huff and proceeded to write this song.

Since then the track has developed into what you can hear/ see today - but I thought I would share this chain of events as it's  funny how certain triggers in our lives can spark creativity - a lucky argument if you will!

Some lyrics and guitar were added during later sessions at Pirate Studios in Glasgow - they seem to help complement this Playfio music video which is  set in another dimension, many years in the future, with two intrepid adventures trying to re-visit the old shell of earth that their ancestors used to call home.

The lyrics I particularly like:

I'd like to know, which way to go,
Which way to look, beyond this show.
If only one, can listen in, and look beyond the state I'm in.

A million miles, a hundred roads,
And only two can make it home.
Listen well, and listen wise
This one's yours, now step inside

I've asked a few people prior to release how they read this story - all being completely different - would love to hear people's thoughts about what they think is going on in this music video.

As always with these productions, I am just a part of the combined work of many extremely talented individuals from the guitar work, the amazing film craft and of course the mixing and mastering.

Links/ Credits:

Written by Rob Playford with Claude Etienne on guitar and the mix and master engineer was Adam Titmuss.

Rob Playford
Adam Titmuss
Claude Etienne

Video footage:
Sci-Fi Short Film “Telescope  DUST: Sci-Fi Short Film “Telescope" | DUST
Sci-Fi Short Film AI-POCALYPSE  DUST:Sci-Fi Short Film "AI-POCALYPSE" | DUST

Wednesday 5 August 2020

'Memory Sweeper' Music Review by Spiderhands Productions

Many thanks for Logan (Spiderhands) for taking time out to review 'Memory Sweeper' which features on the new 'Arcadian Resonance' album out 20.08.20.

It's really eye-opening to be able to see Logan's emotions and reactions firsthand on listening and watching the music video.

I suppose one thing as an artist you can never do, unfortunately, is hear your track for the first time. Generally, you've listened to it that many times that it's hard to hear it as a whole.

Please check out Logan's review below and head to Spiderhands Productions who specialise in Music Lessons and Studio Production.

The full version and write-up can be found here > Memory Sweeper Official Music Video