David Gray today releases a new video to accompany ‘Accumulates’, which features on his critically acclaimed twelfth studio album, Skellig, now available across physical CD & vinyl formats via Laugh a Minute Records /AWAL Recordings. The second LP to be produced by Ben de Vries, the thirteen-track album departs from the shimmering electronics of 2019’s Gold In A Brass Age and embarks on a sparser, communal soundscape with the atmospheric songs centring themselves around six-part vocals with Gray trading his signature gravel for a softer tone. Recorded prior to the pandemic and released digitally to critical praise earlier this year, the album recording session took place at Edwyn Collins’ Helmsdale studio on the Sutherland coast, with De Vries and Gray finessing the mix throughout lockdown. Watch the ‘Accumulates’ video from here, and stream Skellig in full from here.
‘Accumulates’ is a brooding, guitar-induced state of hypnosis which comments on the ease with which modern society can subvert once good intentions. Gray likens it to A Chomsky-trope about how things just kind-of seep into you, and then the next thing you know, you’re making a decision that is abhorrent (or would have been). But under the current pretext seems a reasonably sane thing to do.
“There’s two ways forward in the sensual world. You either go for experience-over-everything. You say, “I’m going to be faithful only to my heart and to my senses, and I want to absorb as much experience as possible while I’m on planet earth. Or you fall in line with the limitations of some kind of accepted moral framework. It’s not so much of an either/or, but more a matter of where you merge those two ideas. Is denying yourself something a strength of will or moral weakness? Are you afraid of getting what you want? These are the choices that we make. Returning to the monks of Skellig Michael, their big decision was to pledge everything they had to nothing. To be of-nothing, with nothing.” David Gray