Smile Down Upon Us : Smile Down Upon Us

What a find! I chanced upon this CD in Oxfam at the weekend, it catching my eye amongst the usual flotsom and jetsom of dodgy albums and Dodgy albums. Static Caravan released the debut self titled album by Smile Down Upon Us this summer; a project between Tokyo based singer moomLooo and Keiron Phealan and David Sheppard from London. The story goes that neither side met during the recording, bouncing ideas and recordings back across the Internet.

“I don't speak any Japanese and moom's English is so-so,” says Phelan. “In order to understand each other, we had to use simple language, and our emails began to look like a dialogue between two hyper-enthusiastic nine year-olds. We could only discuss things in a very ‘primary colour’ way and the music seemed to become extremely vivid too. Dave and I had the idea that this was sounding like a Chagall painting looks. That seemed a really strong and suitable feeling for the band, so we pushed it along that road.”

That the trio mananged to create such a magical album is accentuated by the childlike charm that surrounds each track, a warm mixture of strings, ukelele, banjo and flutes combined with moomLooo's beguiling lyrics and field recordings. All in all it took fourteen months to complete, an arduous task for even the most studio hardened band, let alone one that had never spoken.

Buy @ Resonance Store