An artist with a profound sense of belief and inner strength, Erdi Irmak's story continues to write itself through the creative arts. Returning to Proton Music, the Turkish producer reveals himself through a "Hidden Arcadia".
Born in a country with a rich and ancient cultural heritage, Erdi Irmak has witnessed a childhood few could comprehend. Raised in the sprawling Istanbul maze with its towering minarets and symphony of car horns woven into Muslim calls to prayer, Erdi has attempted to harness the ubiquitous twins of tragedy and hope that has shaped his life, looking deep within himself to search for "the Arcadia inside my soul".
Through music art and cinema, Erdi has combined the cultural sounds of his homeland with the world of electronic music, bringing together the juxtaposed ideals of Asia and Europe that divide the city across the banks of the vast Bosphorous. The harmony of nature so central to the very concept of a Greek arcadia has provided Erdi with a place of tranquillity from which to nurture a creative process. Striving to recognise and positively use the experiences of a difficult past, "Hidden Arcadia" is a reflection of my inner world"; a place to escape the drudgery and sadness of a real world filled with uncertainty and violence.
From the Proton Radio show of the same name, "Hidden Arcadia" charts Erdi Irmak's musical journey. Reaching deep inside the well of his creative soul, the quartet of tracks presented here represent a seed from which subsequent volumes will blossom through a combination of original and remix material. Furthermore, conceptual and highly innovative artwork from Ben Mautner entwines itself with Erdi's story. Depicting a precise cinematic frame, samples from a plethora of dramatic film scenes are encapsulated in 170,000 drops of pure imagination.
Full of percussive intricacy, "A Silver Leaf" immediately enthrals with its angular groove that combines rhythmic and melodic cadence. Evolving delicately, the mood is softened by smooth flowing melodies that are interwoven against each other, jostling in counterpoint motifs that lilt across the stereo spectrum. A driving beat forms the foundation for "Daybreak" as sumptuous female vocals create a warm and haunting texture that gradually develops over the eight-minute piece. A delicate bass groove adds weight while an intermittent clave phrase creates nuance.
A glissando lead line flows gently from the snapping four/four beat of "Nothing Lasts" while another female vocal wraps itself around the tight groove in a velvet cloak. A combination of strings and delayed motifs appear in a stripped back breakdown before rhythms and melody filter into range in the second half. The up-tempo finale finds "Owl" a creature full of prowess. Rich in delicately feathered melodic layers, a hint of menace builds through modulated lead line and a strong rhythmic foundation that finds its target through mesmerising precision.
An artist with a vital story to tell, Erdi Irmak showcases an oasis of calm and beauty in his "Hidden Arcadia".
Directed by Jay Epoch AandR by James Warren Mastered by Cid Inc. Design by Ben Mautner Text by James Warren